Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Canada called to chip in for demining work

Canada called to chip in for demining work

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A demining personnel unearthed an unexploded ordnance. CMAC

Canada called to chip in for demining work

Cambodia has requested that Canada consider supporting a research project and review the current status of minefields as related to land use across the country to reduce the cost and time for demining.

Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority (CMAA) first vice-president Ly Thuch told The Post on December 16 that since 1999 the Canadian government has played a crucial role and provided more than $17 million to support demining activities in Cambodia.

Through this budget, Canada has supported minefield research across the country. Compiling new data for mapping will make it easier to locate mines in the country, because, without an updated map, it will be a very challenging job to clear landmines in Cambodia.

“Over the past two decades, the real statuses of [some] minefields have changed, so we have to update the data. That will make it easier for operators to set goals and budgets for demining efforts,” he said.

“We want to ask [Canada] to help support new data collection because the data we have in use is old. We have to inspect the locations for sure to see how many mine-contaminated plantations remain.

“Once we have gathered the latest data on landmines, and determined which areas have been cleared of mines, we would not need to conduct demining operations there because we can guarantee safety for citizens who use the land,” he said.

Thuch said Canada would consider supporting the project because it has identified Cambodia as a country that needs demining assistance.

“Currently, Cambodia has cleared landmines from an area of 2,100sq km, but there is still another 2,000sq km of uncleared landmines. To date, Cambodians who were killed by mines numbered over 25,000 - placing Cambodia just behind Afghanistan [on the global landmine fatality list],” he said.

Cambodia Self-Help Demining training manager Chhun Bora said that through assistance from abroad Cambodia has been conducting detection research to draft maps to determine landmine zones.

He said that due to population growth and the appreciation of land prices people have occupied plantations with mines.

“Because the landmine risk has increased our demining operations are still ongoing. Nevertheless, demining is still a difficult matter,” he said.

Bora added that people are occupying land way faster than the demining rate, mainly because of the limited funds to demine the affected areas.

Once Cambodia has received aid from partners, it will survey lands to determine new minefield locations and remove former minefields from demining maps.

“If there is no danger on certain land, we would determine as such and remove it from our maps for demining,” he said.

In its Facebook post on December 16, the Canadian embassy in Cambodia said that since 1994, the Canadian government has contributed approximately $50 million to demining efforts in Cambodia.

And between 1994 and 2000, more than 60 Canadian Armed Forces members worked with the Cambodian Mine Action Centre (CMAC) to find and remove deadly land mines.

The Canadian government also contributed to the demining initiative through the ‘’Clearing for Results” project, Agriculture Development in Mine Affected Areas of Cambodia (ADMAC) and the first comprehensive Cambodian National Level One Survey (L1S), to collect and register information about mines/UXO-affected areas into the national database, and helping to prioritise and plan demining campaigns.

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia maintains 'Kun Khmer' stance despite Thailand’s boycott threat

    Cambodia has taken the position that it will use the term "Kun Khmer" to refer to the sport of kickboxing at the upcoming Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, and has removed the term Muay from all references to the sport. Despite strong reactions from the Thai

  • Chinese group tours return to Cambodia starting Feb 6

    Cambodia is among 20 countries selected by Beijing for a pilot programme allowing travel agencies to provide international group tours as well as flight and hotel packages to Chinese citizens, following a three-year ban. As the days tick down until the programme kicks off on February 6,

  • Capital-Poipet express rail project making headway

    The preliminary results of a feasibility study to upgrade the Phnom Penh-Poipet railway into Cambodia’s first express railway indicate that the project would cost more than $4 billion and would take around four years to complete. The study was carried out by China Road and

  • Thai boxers to join SEA Games’ Kun Khmer event

    The Cambodian SEA Games Organising Committee (CAMSOC) – together with the Kun Khmer International Federation (KKIF) and Khmer Boxing Federation – have achieved a “great success” by including Kun Khmer in the upcoming biennial multi-sports event on its home soil for the first time, said a senior

  • Bullets to bracelets: Siem Reap man makes waste from war wearable

    Jewellery is often made from valuable gemstones like emeralds or diamonds and precious metals like gold or silver, or valueless things like animal horns. But a man in Siem Reap has approached the manufacture of delicate pieces from a different angle. His unique form of

  • 61% of 2022 imports came from just 3 markets

    The three largest exporters to Cambodia – mainland China, Vietnam and Thailand – accounted for 60.94 per cent of the Kingdom’s total merchandise imports last year, at $18.245 billion, which was up 11.99 per cent over 2021, according to the General Department of Customs and Excise. Cambodia’s total imports