Authorities are trying to identify a young girl found on Tuesday in a makeshift hammock among some trees near a religious site frequented by tourists in Battambang province.
Two moto-taxi drivers who had been ferrying tourists to the top of Phnom Sampov spotted the toddler lying in a scarf tied between two trees off a narrow road in Banan district’s Phnom Sampov commune, according to district police chief Thorng Thin.
The drivers reported the situation to commune police who arrived at the site with district police at about 8:30 a.m., said Mr. Thin, who added that he believed the girl was about 3 years old and Cambodian.
“We don’t know where the girl is from and who her parents are,” Mr. Thin said. “We haven’t figured it out yet.”
“According to the police’s assumption, the girl wasn’t abandoned very long ago,” he added. “She might have just been abandoned earlier in the morning.”
Mr. Thin said police officers examined the girl at the site and found that she was unresponsive and “it seems like she is not physically and mentally normal,” he said, adding that she was unable to speak or walk.
Found with a bag of clothing, a bottle, formula and a plush toy, the girl was taken to the state-run Phnom Sampov health center, where staff confirmed that she could not move her limbs or speak, said commune police chief Mey Chhengly.
Phnom Sampov, located about 12 km from Battambang City on National Road 57, is popular with foreigners and locals who visit the pagoda and the many stupas at its peak.
Mr. Thin said police were investigating how the girl came to be left at the site, about 2 meters off the main road. He said she was transferred to commune officials on Tuesday afternoon and later taken to the state-run Borey Komah Komprea orphanage in Battambang City.
Staff at the orphanage could not be reached for comment.
soumy@cambodiadaily.com
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