The Royal Cambodian Armed Forces’ annual sports competition and equipment exhibition on Koh Pich island this weekend will be bigger than last year’s inaugural event.
RCAF’s deputy commander Lieutenant General Hun Manet said yesterday the event hoped to achieve four goals, the first of which was to commemorate Victory Day, the 39th anniversary of the fall of the Khmer Rouge on January 7.
The second goal was to assist military veterans and their families, the third to help the public understand the military and its role in defending the nation and the fourth, to increase friendship between the public and military.
“There is an increase in the number of participants. Last year, we only had 34 groups and this year, we have 46 groups including members of the public,” Lt Gen Manet said. “More than 500 people will join this year’s competition.”
Lt Gen Manet said he wanted the public to have a greater understanding of the military’s ability.
“The armed forces must have good health because if we don’t, how can we attack?” he asked. “We must have good health and strong bodies.”
When asked about colour revolutions, Lt Gen Manet said the military would not allow it on Cambodian soil.
“Incitement like this is illegal, against the constitution and opposes democratic principles,” he said.
He added it was difficult to compare RCAF’s ability or weapons with neighbouring countries, but he said the military’s fighting spirit could defend the country.
Lt Gen Manet said citizens were not alarmed by Wednesday’s movement of troops and armoured vehicles, adding that many people had come out to take selfies.
“We hope to have more leftover budget this year. We had about $10,000 last year which we used to help build houses for poor veterans or help the families of deceased veterans,” he said.