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Three Detained over Cambodian Boat Accident that Killed 11


The coffin of Son Sophat, a teen victim of a boat accident, is carried in a wooden boat during a funeral procession in Koh Chamroeun village, east of Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Friday, Oct. 14, 2022.

Authorities have detained two owners and the 15-year-old operator of a boat that sank, killing 11 children, Cambodian police said Saturday.

The small boat -- carrying students aged between 12 and 15 back from an English class -- went down in the Mekong River late Thursday, floundering roughly 50 metres (160 feet) from its destination in southeastern Kandal province.

Local police chief Am Thou told AFP that three individuals had been detained for questioning over the incident.

"They may have to face legal action. We are looking into what charges they may face," he said.

The police chief added that the three had been sent to Kandal provincial police headquarters, where their next steps would be determined.

Local officials called off the search for survivors on Saturday morning, with the death toll rising to 11.

Two adult boat operators and two students were rescued Friday.

Prime Minister Hun Sen warned people to be cautious during the heavy flooding that has raised the Mekong River's levels.

Such incidents are common in the Southeast Asian country, where people living along the river are often reliant on boats for transport.

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