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Deminers discover big cache of shells, ammo

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UXO units found in Kampong Speu province on Tuesday. POLICE

Deminers discover big cache of shells, ammo

Many cases of K57 grenade launcher ammunition and 30 82mm recoilless rifle shells were destroyed by the HALO Trust on January 19, after people found them buried in the ground in Trapaing Chor commune’s Chheuteal Chrum village of Kampong Speu province’s Oral district.

Houn Ny, manager of HALO Trust’s unexploded ordnance demining team, said 24 cases of K57 grenades and 30 DK82 shells were safely disposed of in a location far from any settlements.

“Our team stored the explosives for two days before we destroyed them,” he said.

Trapaing Chor commune police chief Neou Nonn said the war remnants were collected by the HALO Trust experts after being found on January 17. Some of the ammunition was still in good condition.

“The K57 rounds were corroded, but almost half of the DK82 recoilless rifle rounds looked safe. Still, they could explode and cause harm to people,” he said.

He said a K57 was an automatic grenade launcher slightly larger than an AK assault rifle, while a DK82 was about half a metre long and was designed for firing at tanks and armoured vehicles.

According to Nonn, the bullets were found by a resident of Chheuteal Chrum village while he was ploughing land. Oral district was a former Khmer Rouge stronghold, where soldiers had hidden themselves in 1988, he said.

The shells are probably remnants of the war between the Cambodian state and the Khmer Rouge, he added.

“Residents in the commune often find UXOs, but previously they were only found in small numbers,” he said.

“We educate people in the villages so they are aware of the dangers of explosive war remnants. If they find them, they must not touch them but notify us immediately,” he added.

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