Cambodia to train Ukrainian sappers
Ukrainian sappers (Photo:Natalia Kravchuk / NV)
Under an agreement between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Cambodian PM Hun Sen, Cambodian sappers will train the Ukrainian military in demining operations, The Washington Post reported on Nov. 2. Cambodia is one of the world’s most heavily mined countries, with considerable institutional expertise in the field.
Heng Ratana, Director General of the Cambodian Mine Action Center, consulted with Japanese partners and decided to send the first group of sappers to Ukraine in early December. The second group of instructors will be sent in Q1 2023.
Cambodian sappers are considered among the most experienced in the world. After a series of civil and interstate wars, lasting for nearly thirty years and finally ending in 1998, huge swathes of the country were left mined, presenting a danger for the civilian population – especially in rural areas. Since then, Cambodian experts destroyed huge amounts of ordnance and landmines. Their sappers also participated in mine clearing across several African and Middle Eastern countries – under the auspices of the UN.
Cambodia opposed the Russian invasion of Ukraine by voting for the UN resolution condemning Russia’s war of aggression.
“Cambodia is always against any country that invades another country,” PM Hun Sen said.
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