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Bavet Governor Sacked After Shooting Incident

An unidentified garment worker lying on a hospital bed with multiple gunshot wounds to her back. Last week, police identified the mayor of Bavet town Chhouk Bandit as the prime suspect.

The governor of Bavet city, who is accused of shooting at protesting garment workers in Svay Rieng province, has been removed from his job, government officials said Thursday.

Chhouk Bandith, who is wanted for questioning by the court for injuring three workers in the Feb. 20 shooting, is due to face the provincial court later this month, but he has not been arrested.

Around 1,000 workers had gathered to demand better working conditions and pay in a special economic zone in the province. Seven police officers were injured when the protest turned violent, leading to the shooting.

Chhouk Bandith’s dismissal comes from a sub-decree signed by Prime Minister Hun Sen March 5.

Chhouk Bandith will retain a provincial government post, but it remains unclear what that position will be, said Men Vibol, deputy governor of Svay Rieng province.

His deputy, Deb Saroeun, will replace him on Friday.