Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Indonesia to aid elite troops



Indonesia to aid elite troops

Indonesia to aid elite troops

I NDONESIA has stepped up its military aid program to Cambodia with new plans to train 200 soldiers from the RCAF elite Special Forces.

The soldiers will be sent to Indonesia in September on a 10-month tour of duty to be trained in advanced military tactics which will concentrate on teaching the men to operate effectively in difficult terrain.

RCAF officers feel that Indonesia, with jungle terrain similar to that in Cambodia, will provide an ideal training environment for their elite troops.

Colonel Jika Pagjrana, military attaché to the Indonesian Embassy, said: "We will only be training soldiers, this is our contribution to the ongoing re-organization of the Cambodian Royal Army.

"We have no intention to supply lethal aid to Cambodia. Our Foreign Minister has already stated this.

"Specialized training will depend entirely on the condition and ability of the Cambodian armed forces, it's up to their basic abilities, we cannot push them.

"We have a range of options open to them. Whether it's normal, regular or special training is up to their preparation."

The military attaché added: "This will be an ongoing thing, we will assess the results. Future aid will depend on the success of the training and our ability to provide further funding.

Col Pagjrana said the cost of the training program would be $3 million which would be met entirely by the Indonesian Government.

Cambodia's Special Forces were created after the signing of the Paris Peace Accords in 1991 and comprise soldiers from the three factions in the government, said Colonel Kong Bun Thoeun, one of the officers in the battalion. It has 402 men and is headed by General Chap Tony.

Colonel Thoeun said: "We may eventually expand to accommodate a further 200 men [in the training program]. We made a proposal for the Indonesians to train us and are now in full training so we can send our men [to Indonesia] in September."

Training for the service is not quite the strenuous physical workout imagined by most people.

The preparation consists of warm-up exercises and six activities which include: a three km run, 12 chin-ups, 35 sit-ups, 35 push-ups, 35 knee bends and swimming.

The men say while they find the training tough, they are still enthusiastic to attend the sessions at the Olympic Stadium.

Sergeant Jim Jong, who has been in the Special Forces for three years, said: "I am very happy because the Royal Army will be an international army, like the Indonesians.

"I am very happy to be in the Special Forces. If I pass [the training] I will go to Indonesia, this will make my family very proud."

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Kingdom one of safest to visit in Covid-19 era’

    The Ministry of Tourism on January 12 proclaimed Cambodia as one of the safest countries to visit in light of the Kingdom having been ranked number one in the world by the Senegalese Economic Prospective Bureau for its success in handling the Covid-19 pandemic. In rankings

  • Ministry mulls ASEAN+3 travel bubble

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to launch a travel bubble allowing transit between Cambodia and 12 other regional countries in a bid to resuscitate the tourism sector amid crushing impact of the ongoing spread of Covid-19, Ministry of Tourism spokesman Top Sopheak told The Post on

  • Kingdom accepts Chinese vaccine, PM first to get jab

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said China would offer Cambodia an immediate donation of one million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine produced by the Sinopharm company. In an audio message addressing the public on the night of January 15, he said Cambodia has accepted the offer and

  • Reeling in Cambodia’s real estate sector

    A new norm sets the scene but risks continue to play out in the background A cold wind sweeps through the streets of Boeung Trabek on an early January morning as buyers and traders engage in commerce under bright blue skies. From a distance, the

  • PM asks India for vaccine help

    Prime Minister Hun Sen is seeking assistance from India for the provision of Covid-19 vaccines as the country has produced its own vaccine which is scheduled to be rolled out to more than 300 million Indians this year. The request was made during his meeting with

  • One million Chinese Covid-19 jabs to start rolling in from February

    The government has confirmed that Covid-19 vaccines from China are set to begin arriving in Cambodia by February. This came as the Ministry of Health recorded two imported cases of Covid-19 on January 18. While calling on people to remain vigilant against the pandemic, ministry spokeswoman