20 Fire trucks fighting a fire

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For commuters crossing the Monivong bridge on National Road 1 over the Bassac River, it was quite a sight: 20 fire trucks fighting a fire that swept through a riverside shantytown of 36 wooden shacks. But in 90 minutes, the noonday fire destroyed all the houses, leaving over 100 people without shelter just as the rainy season gets serious. Many residents were at work when the fire broke out. On returning home, all they could do is sift through the ashes for lost jewelry.

KT Photos: Jean-Francois Perigois

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