The Cambodian Mine Action Centre, along with local officials, have discovered hundreds of unexploded ordnances and smalls arms munitions following a two-day operation that began on Tuesday to clear Kampong Chhnang province’s Chul Kiri district of explosive remnants of war.
Seng Khoeun, Chul Kiri district deputy police chief, said that officers collaborated with CMAC authorities to inspect the area.
“CMAC officials were here for two days and they found a lot of UXOs on the first day, while on the second day, they only managed to find a few,” Mr Khoeun said. “CMAC officials took what was discovered for it to be disposed.”
He said that the area used to be a war zone in which soldiers who were stationed there planted bombs in the canal to avoid crossings.
Heng Ratana, director-general of CMAC, said yesterday that the discovery netted several types of explosives and munitions.
“There were nearly 200 ordnances of various types, and among them were 91 kilograms of small arms munitions including grenades and rockets,” Mr Ratana said. “All of them were found in the dried canal. It’s hard to attribute who the explosives belonged to.”
As of December, 1,700 square kilometres of land across the country has been demined, while about three million explosives were destroyed. However, 2,000 square kilometres have yet to be cleared.
According to a Cambodian Mine Action and Victim’s Assistance official in May, Cambodia is aiming to be mine-free by 2025.
The official noted that the country has made significant progress in reducing mine-related casualties over the past 25 years.