AROUND 1,000 soldiers from 23 countries will partake in military exercises in Cambodia in July as part of the US-funded Global Peace Operations Initiative (GPOI), officials said Tuesday.
Defence Ministry spokesman Chhum Socheat said the details of the exercises had been confirmed during talks with US Admiral William Crowe, who visited the Kingdom earlier this month.
He said the exercises would be held at military training facilities in Kampong Speu province and in Phnom Penh.
“It is the first time the country has hosted the GPOI exercise,” he said. “I think that the visit of William Crowe was highly valued by the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces.”
US embassy spokesman John Johnson said the July exercises would be “designed to enable Cambodia to sustain and improve its peacekeeping missions in the future”.
Cambodia has previously sent peacekeepers to Sudan, and more than 200 Royal Cambodian Armed Forces soldiers are set to depart for Chad and the Central African Republic next month to supplement a contingent of peacekeepers who deployed to the two countries last November.
The GPOI is expected to train and equip 75,000 peacekeepers this year, according to the US state department.