Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Temple tourist sites are mine clearing priorities

Temple tourist sites are mine clearing priorities

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Officials from CMAC and National Authority for Preah Vihear (NAPV) check a map for landmine clearance work at Koh Ker temple area in Preah Vihear province on January 4. NAPV

Temple tourist sites are mine clearing priorities

The Cambodian Mine Action Centre (CMAC) has cleared more than 40ha of landmines and unexploded ordnance (UXO) in two temple areas in Preah Vihear province and continues to do so at the request of the National Authority for Preah Vihear (NAPV), according to an NAPV Facebook post.

The post added that CMAC began clearing landmines there for the first time in September last year and has now begun a new operation there on January 1 in two locations to help prepare the way for infrastructure construction for tourism development and further temple conservation work.

“The clearance of landmines this time is taking place at the Tamen temple area of about 30ha and at the entrance to the Koh Ker temple resort, an area of about 14ha,” the Facebook post said.

NAPV director-general Kong Puthikar told The Post on January 9 that CMAC plans to conduct clearance operations throughout the entire Koh Ker temple area of about 200ha once it has completed further research.

“The remaining landmines are on the northern side of the temple so we have yet to allow any tourists to enter that area and we have just expanded this area to set up a conservation system to protect what is on the ancient temple’s grounds.

“When the work is completed, then we can allow tourists into the area. The area we are expanding the park to include has an ancient dam. It is an ancient irrigation system connecting the Tamen Temple and the road to Angkor and Koh Ker and then over to Wat Phu in Laos,” he added.

Kong Puthikar said that the whole Koh Ker temple resort covers a total area of 8,789ha. The entire area would eventually be cleared of mines in order to provide an opportunity for tourists to visit the entire ancient site.

CMAC director-general Heng Ratana told The Post on January 9 that CMAC has been cooperating with NAPV to clear landmines and UXO in temples across the country since 2001 and that both sides were committed to finishing the work as soon as possible, ideally by 2025 to coincide with the national landmine free goal.

“As part of our strategy for 2022, we will increase our efforts at clearing as many of our potential tourist sites as we can across the country. Particularly for the clearance of the Koh Ker temple – we will continue to send demining operators there so we can complete it within the next few years,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Omicron patients can stay home: PM

    The Ministry of Health has issued a directive on the treatment of people who have tested positive for the highly transmissible Omicron coronavirus variant, following a suggestion from Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of January 21. The directive permits home quarantine for those who

  • The effects of the USD interest rate hike on Cambodian economy

    Experts weigh in on the effect of a potential interest rate expansion by the US Federal Reserve on a highly dollarised Cambodia Anticipation of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in March is putting developing economies on edge, a recent blog post by

  • Cambodia’s first ever anime festival kicks off Jan 22 at capital’s F3 centre

    Phnom Penh's first ever Anime Festival will bring together fans, artists, shops and other local businesses with ties to the Japanese animation style for cosplay competitions, online games, pop-up shops and more on January 22, with Friends Futures Factory (F3) hosting. F3 is a project that

  • Hun Sen gets 4th Covid shot, urges compatriots to follow

    Prime Minister Hun Sen and his wife Bun Rany on January 14 received their fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine and called on compatriots to follow suit as the Omicron coronavirus variant continues to spread in the community. This marks the launch of Cambodia's fourth-dose vaccination campaign,

  • Fourth dose Covid booster drive jabs 43K in two days

    In the first two days of the fourth-dose Covid-19 vaccination campaign, more than 43,000 people volunteered to get the jabs, while over 4.6 million people have received a third shot. Health ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said that fourth-dose vaccinations, which began on January 14 exclusively with the Pfizer

  • Singapore backs Cambodia's efforts on Myanmar

    Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong supports Cambodia in its efforts to seek a solution to the ongoing Myanmar crisis as the chair of ASEAN. Lee expressed his support during a meeting with Prime Minister Hun Sen via videoconference on January 14, with the talks focused