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Monday, 27 November, 2000, 06:57 GMT
American held over Cambodia shootout
Gun shot victims receive medical attention
At least 12 people were wounded in the attack
An American citizen has been arrested in connection with Friday's armed attack on government offices in Phnom Penh, officials and the US ambassador said.

Richard Kiri Kim, 51, who was born in Cambodia, was arrested on Saturday as he was trying to board a plane out of the country.

He allegedly said he was a member of a US-based anti-communist group - the Cambodian Freedom Fighters.


He said he was trying to overthrow the government of Prime Minister Hun Sen, Associated Press news agency quoted Ambassador Kent Wiedemann as saying.

The United Nations envoy to Cambodia said a full investigation was needed and urged the government to treat suspected rebels fairly.

The armed attackers struck at several government offices on Friday, including the defence ministry and a military barracks on the outskirts of the capital.

Security forces battled with the group of about 50 attackers for an hour, killing seven of the rebels and arresting many others.

$500 reward for leader

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen has blamed two overseas-based anti-government groups - the Freedom Fighters, based in the Untied States, and Khmer Serei, whose leader lives in France.

Bullet holes
The gun battle lasted an hour
On Saturday night he called on Washington to assist in the arrest and possible extradition of the leader of an anti-communist group based in the US, but did not mention any group by name.

He also pledged a $500 reward for anyone finding the leader of the gang that led Friday's attack.

Mr Wiedemann was quoted as saying that the US would co-operate with Cambodia over the attack, but its first priority would be to ensure that the suspects' legal rights were respected.

The fighting was the worst in the Cambodian capital since the violent 1997 removal of Prince Norodom Ranariddh by Prime Minister Hun Sen.

The anti-Communist Cambodian Freedom Fighters group has accused the government of being a Vietnamese puppet.

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24 Nov 00 | Asia-Pacific
Attack on Cambodian ministry
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