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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Flooding impacts provincial prison

Severe flooding in Northwestern Cambodia has left Banteay Meanchey provincial prison under more than 70 centimetres of water and created increasingly worrisome humanitarian conditions at the facility, prison officials and rights workers said.

Thean Chhorvoan, acting director of Banteay Meanchey provincial prison, said floods hit the detention centre beginning last Saturday and had been rising ever since.

“On Tuesday, the water level rose to a half-metre, and as of Thursday, the level of water has risen to 70 centimetres, even though authorities have used four generators to pump out water from the prison around the clock,” Thean Chhorvoan said.

The area around the prison was also flooded, he added.

Thean Chhorvoan said yesterday that administrators had no immediate plans to evacuate inmates from the prison because they had succeeded for the time being in diverting the floodwaters from the prisoners’ sleeping area.

But Chea Sothea, a prison monitor for local rights group Licadho, said inmates were having trouble sleeping as water seeped into their quarters.

With the prison’s latrine flooded, she added, inmates had been forced to defecate in plastic bags, creating an extremely unsanitary environment that had led several prisoners to fall ill with diarrhea.
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Police arrested 10 murder suspects

Meanchey district police have apprehended 10 men suspected of involvement in the brutal murder of three family members whose slashed and beaten bodies were found in their home in Phnom Penh’s Chamkarmon district on Tuesday.

The three victims – 16-year-old Ry Nalin and her parents, 52-year-old Ry Saron and 46-year-old Ne Sovannary – were found in their home in Village 7 with their hands tied behind their backs and their throats cut. The house had also been robbed.

Mean Heng Tith, deputy district police chief, said 10 male suspects aged between 16 and 35 had been arrested and temporarily detained for questioning in connection with the incident.

He said all 10 suspects live in Meanchey district’s Chak Angre Leu commune but declined to provide any further details because of ongoing investigations.

He also stressed that no one had been charged.
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