Cambodia has successfully hosted a 10-day multinational training session focusing on landmine and unexploded ordnance (UXO) removal.

The event was organised under the theme “Pure Homeland-2023” within the framework of the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting-Plus (ADMM-Plus).

The exercise, which ran from September 13, united soldiers and military instructors from 14 ASEAN-Plus countries. The Ministry of National Defence reported that the focus was primarily on humanitarian mine clearance, UXO destruction and the exchange of skills and experiences, highlighting the development of equipment, technology and innovation.

Chhum Socheat, ministry secretary of state, conveyed the ministry’s pride in the smooth and successful execution of this important operation.

“The drills underscored the Kingdom’s pivotal role in the region and on the global stage,” he said.

Thong Mengdavid, a research fellow at the Mekong Centre for Strategic Studies of the Asian Vision Institute, also expressed his patriotic pride in the hosting of the exercise.

“The training imparted knowledge, skills and techniques to the ASEAN-Plus trainees and fosters shared experiences and trust,” he said, highlighting the Kingdom’s years of experience and specialised human resources in the field.

Mengdavid noted the country’s contributions to worldwide peace, citing its humanitarian assistance in Ukraine and active participation in UN peacekeeping missions in several African countries.

“Cambodia has continually supported and promoted peace, stability and strengthened cooperation with other countries in the spirit of international law and multilateralism,” he said.

Kin Phea, director of the International Relations Institute at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, emphasised the country’s transformation from a mine-contaminated land to an active contributor to transnational clearance.

“This event showcased our increasing significance in regional and global affairs and the promotion of peace, political stability, human resources, economies and finance,” Phea added, highlighting the exercise’s role in enhancing the nation’s regional and international profile and its contribution to tourism.