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US detectors at port

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Royal Cambodian Armed Forces troops participate in the Angkor Sentinel joint military exercise in Kampong Speu province in March last year.

American troops had begun training Cambodian customs officials to use radiation-detection equipment installed at Sihanoukville Port in a bid to prevent terrorism, a port official said yesterday.

Kim Chhun, the director-general of Sihanoukville Port, said  the new equipment would prevent smuggling of nuc-lear or radioactive materials from Cambodia to the United States.

The technology and training would prevent terrorism not only in the US but in many other countries, he said.

The equipment had been installed as part of a 2009 agreement between the US and Cambodia to prevent the shipment of nuclear and other radioactive materials through Sihanoukville Port, the US National Nuclear Security Administration said last week.

Meanwhile, Cambodian troops would participate for the first time in a month-long joint  “crisis response” exercise with troops from the US and Australia near Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville this month, the US Embassy in Phnom Penh said on Monday.

As part of the exercises, a team of US crisis-response experts  would “advise, assist, and assess Cambodia’s crisis management capabilities”, the embassy said.

“This exercise presents an opportunity to evaluate planning capabilities and co-ordinate activities across several organisations in an effort to promote security, stability, and prosperity in Cambodia and throughout the region,” US ambassador Carol Rodley said.

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