Two teenage girls are missing and presumed dead after the wooden boat they were travelling on capsized.
Twelve people travelling aboard the vessel on the way to Sneha island on the Mekong River when it capsized dumping all of them in the water just 10 m from the bank.
Rescuers managed to save 10 of the people, but the two 18-year-olds identified as Yoern Sreypich and Srey Na were not found, and rescuers say there is now little hope that they will be discovered alive.
Men Sum who is the spokesman for the local community said the boat was only designed to carry four or five people, which meant there were 10 people more than that should have been aboard.
He confirmed that the search and rescue operation was continuing despite the fact that the accident happened on Sunday.
The rescuers have been joined by members of the young women’s families who are helping with the search. He said they had also offered Buddhist prayers for the young women and had hired people to assist.
Local police chief Captain Vong Samel said the two women were celebrating Chinese New Year and were visiting relatives, and then wanted to make an extra trip to a friend who lived on Sneha island.
He added: “The boat was made of wood and had a motor and it sank because it was overburdened with too many people.”
The passengers who were rescued were not injured and have been released to their homes in the meantime.
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