Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Mine-free status seen for Kampong Chhnang in December as work barrels towards 2025 target

Mine-free status seen for Kampong Chhnang in December as work barrels towards 2025 target

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Ly Thuch leads a meeting to discuss landmine clearance action in Kampong Chhnang province on August 31. CMAA

Mine-free status seen for Kampong Chhnang in December as work barrels towards 2025 target

According to senior minister Ly Thuch, Prime Minister Hun Sen has always regarded demining work as one of his core priorities and part of his mission of rescuing, restoring, building and developing the nation.

Thuch also said that Kampong Chhnang province is a priority province and its clearance will be part of the Samdech Techo Project for Mine Action, which has the slogan: “Providing Safe Ground, Creating Smiles.”

Kampong Chhnang province is expected to be declared mine-free in December, 2022.

Thuch was speaking at an August 30 meeting to provide updates on demining operations in the country and to discuss the implementation of the Samdach Techo Project for Mine Action in Kampong Chhnang province.

“[Hun Sen] has always regarded demining work as core priority for the cause of rescuing, restoring, building and developing the nation and this demining mission is to put into practice the vision and the purpose of the prime minister for ending the suffering, fear and hardships of the Cambodian people that are caused by landmines and explosive remnants of war,” he added.

In addition to Kampong Chhnang province, the Cambodian Mine Action Centre (CMAC) will spend 11 months turning 11sq km with over 100 minefields in its area in Kampot province into a safe and mine-free area by mid-2023.

Thuch said that CMAC has deployed its demining forces across five provinces in order to finish work there and declare them mine-free: Kampong Cham, Kampong Chhnang, Takeo, Kampot and Svay Rieng, where they are working on clearing 31sq km of mine infested lands.

Back in early July, Hun Sen appealed to donors to play their part in ensuring that Cambodia is entirely mine-free by 2025.

Three provinces – Kep, Prey Veng and Stung Treng – have so far been declared mine-free, but Cambodia has an estimated 71,603.9ha of landmine fields still present on its territory that will require careful and thorough clearing by experts to meet the Kingdom’s mine-free 2025 goal.

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