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Accused Witch Gunned Down in Kampong Thom


An elderly woman accused of witchcraft was shot to death Monday in Kampong Thom province, police said.

Kan Siem, 49, was killed by an unknown assailant as she traveled to a school to prepare meals for the children, police said.

Phauk Ly, acting deputy police chief of Prasat Sambo district, said the woman was shot in the head and arm.

"We don't know for sure if she knew witchcraft or not," he said, declining to comment further in an ongoing investigation.

Ros Sino, a Sam Rainsy Party activist in Kampong Thom, said witchcraft could have been a motive, adding that Kan Siem's husband was killed five years ago.

She had apparently presaged her own death the night before, telling her children Sunday she would be murdered, Ros Sino said.

"In turn, her offspring told me about it, saying someone wanted to kill her," Ros Sino said.

Thi Try, an investigator for the rights group Adhoc, said the murder of a wife and husband with no arrests was a worry to innocent people and a sign of a culture of impunity.

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