(22 March 1999, Phnom Penh) Decades of armed strife have littered Cambodia with unexploded munitions and ordnance. Authorities warn citizens not to tamper with the devices.
Three friends recently spent an evening sharing drinks and exchanging insults at a local cafe in the southeastern province of Svay Rieng. Their companionable arguing continued for hours, until one man pulled out a 25-year-old unexploded anti-tank mine found in his backyard.
He tossed it under the table, and the three men began playing Russian roulette, each tossing down a drink and then stamping on the mine. The other villagers fled in terror.
Minutes later, the explosive detonated with a tremendous boom, killing the three men in the bar. “Their wives could not even find their flesh because the blast destroyed everything,” the Rasmei Kampuchea newspaper reported.