Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sino-Cambodian military drill begins

Sino-Cambodian military drill begins

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The Ministry of National Defence said 2,871 Cambodian soldiers and 265 Chinese soldiers take part in the exercises. Royal Cambodian Armed Forces

Sino-Cambodian military drill begins

A total of 3,136 soldiers from Cambodia and China have embarked on the fourth Golden Dragon military drill. It is being held from March 15-30 under the theme United to counter terrorism and Cambodia-Chinese humanitarian work.

The Ministry of National Defence said on Sunday that Royal Cambodian Armed Forces (RCAF) commander-in-chief Vong Pisen and Chinese Ambassador to Cambodia Wang Wentian presided over the opening of live-fire exercises.

It is held at Techo Sen Chumkiri Training School at Trapaing Raing commune, Chumkiri district, in Kampot province.

According to an announcement, 2,871 Cambodian soldiers and 265 Chinese People’s Liberation Army soldiers are taking part in the exercises.

The Royal Cambodian Armed forces (RCAF) used four helicopters, 10 T55 tanks, 12 DMT1 armoured vehicles, six 122-D30 artilleries, 12 mortars and many other automatic weapons, and investigative and demining tools, and tools for liberating hostages and neutralising chemical substances.

Chinese soldiers used six helicopters, three 122-D30 mobile artilleries, nine armoured and 28 other vehicles and various combat equipment in the exercises.

Ministry spokesperson Chhum Socheat told The Post on Sunday that Chinese soldiers had been checked rigorously for symptoms of Covid-19.

The checks were conducted in full consideration of the safety of residents around the vicinity of the exercises and people’s health across the country.

“Before the Chinese came, the health of the soldiers was already checked. All 265 of them had undergone standard scans and extensive physical tests to ensure they are healthy and coronavirus-free,” he said.

When asked where the Chinese soldiers had come from, Socheat replied “We don’t know because the Chinese soldiers are from a very mobile and advanced unit.

“They have come from a variety of provinces, but the important thing is they have been checked thoroughly and have no signs of Covid-19,” he stressed.

Socheat said this year’s Golden Dragon exercises will continue to focus on counterterrorism and humanitarian work.

“The exercises present an opportunity for the two armies to continue gaining experience from each other and increasing their professional capacities.

“After this training, they will be able to rescue people during disasters, maintain peace and fulfil missions and duties to defend the nation more efficiently and effectively,” he said.

Socheat said the drill would also contribute significantly to friendly relations between China and Cambodia, and especially between the RCAF and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army.

“The friendship between our nations is the strongest it has ever been under Prime Minister Hun Sen and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

The Golden Dragon joint military drill was held for the first time in 2016, the second in 2018 and the third in 2019. Around 3,000 soldiers from both armies have attended each event.

Minister of National Defence Tea Banh will preside over the closing exercises.


  • Ice cream, noodles flagged over carcinogen

    The General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia (GDCE) has identified three types of instant noodles and ice cream trademarks originating from Thailand, Vietnam and France that are suspected to contain ethylene oxide, which poses a cancer risk to consumers. The general department has

  • Exclusive interview with Josep Borrell Fontelles, High Representative of the EU

    CAMBODIA is hosting the 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings this week with top officials from the US, China, and Russia and other countries in the region slated to attend and to meet with face-to-face with their counterparts on the sidelines. In

  • Rise in Thai air routes to Siem Reap fuels travel hopes

    Local tourism industry players are eager for regional airline Bangkok Airways Pcl’s resumption of direct flight services between the Thai capital and Siem Reap town on August 1 – home of Cambodia’s awe-inspiring Angkor Archaeological Park – which is expected to boost the growth rate of

  • ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ meet commences, Taiwan issue possibly on table

    The 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and related meetings hosted by Cambodia kicks off in Phnom Penh on August 3, with progress, challenges, and the way forward for the ASEAN Community-building on the table. Issues on Taiwan, sparked by the visit of US House Speaker

  • NBC eyes KHQR payments in Laos, Vietnam

    The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) is working with Lao and Vietnamese authorities to expand the use of KHQR code cross-border payment systems to promote trade and investment as well as increase the scope of regional economic linkages, and in particular, facilitate remittances from overseas

  • Recap of this year’s ASEAN FM meet and look ahead

    This year’s edition of the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) hosted by Cambodia comes against the backdrop of heightened global tensions and increasing rivalry between major powers that have been compared to the animosity of the Cold War era. The following is The Post’