Cambodian Mine Action Centre experts, in cooperation with provincial military police, on Wednesday found numerous rockets and anti-tank mines left behind from civil war in Banteay Meanchey province’s Malai district.
Say Rotha, CMAC’s district Demining Office director, yesterday said the ordnances were found by local residents in Take Yai forest, which is located in the district’s Tuol Pongro commune.
He said officials confirmed the caches of war remnants, adding that experts are still working in the area to unearth all weapons buried in the vicinity.
“These rockets and mines were not only found in one pit,” Mr Rotha said. “We cannot estimate how many pits there are yet because we are still checking and we continue to find more.”
He noted that the rockets and mines have not been removed yet, adding that CMAC’s demining experts, together with military police, need more time to examine the area.
“We cannot estimate how many rockets and mines there are because we haven’t taken them out yet,” Mr Rotha said.
He added that some of the weapons were still functioning, while most of them were rusty and not functioning.
“We have marked the area and will not allow people near it because it is too dangerous,” he said.
Mr Rotha added that the ordnances will be destroyed after they have been removed.
“We will remove them as soon as possible and we will destroy them all,” he said.
A Cambodian Mine Action Authority report published last month revealed a 100-percent increase in landmine casualties during the first six months of this year when compared to the same period last year.
The report noted that there were 62 landmine or unexploded ordnance casualties between January and June this year, up from 31 casualties reported in the same period last year.