KRATIE-TBAUNG KHMUM, Cambodia (FN), Jan. 20 — A total number of 66 villagers, most of whom were school children in two districts of Kratie and the newly-established province of Tbaung Khmum in the north and the east of Cambodia respectively fell sick after reportedly eating local sandwiches served by a Vietnamese mobile vendor in the evening of Jan.19. 

However, no fatalities were reported and most of the victims have left the hospitals as of the evening of Jan. 20, police said.

The Vietnamese mobile vendor has been arrested and detained by the authorities pending the outcome of a forensic test of the samples. A police officer of Memot district, Tbaung Khmum province, told the press later 20 Jan. that 18 residents of whom three were women, of Memot district were presumed poisoned after eating the sandwiches, while 48 others most of whom were school children in Snuol District, Kratie province, suffered from similar problems.

Men Vanna, Deputy Governor of Snuol district, Kratie, said there were no fatalities among the victims in his provincial jurisdiction and some of them have recovered and left the hospitals now. He said a Vietnamese mobile sandwich vendor came to a primary school at around noon of Jan.19 and served the food to the students and a number of the villagers. 

Later on that day, he said, all the people who ate the sandwiches suffered from diarrhoea and vomiting. He said nevertheless, causes of the poison had not yet been determined. 

The Vietnamese is a routine mobile vendor in these areas.