U.N. peacekeepers awarded four soldiers from the new united Cambodian Armed Forces
with medals at a ceremony on Aug. 28 to mark the completion of a U.N.-run training
course for military police.
UNTAC Force Commander Lt. Gen. John Sanderson and Gen Keo Kimyan, CAF commander in
chief, presided over the ceremony.
Gen. Sanderson honored the troops and stressed they had important role to play in
"This is a very small but very important beginning and it is you who will be
handing down the instructions and setting the example for future courses."
He stressed to the soldies, who came from the three former warring factions, that
it would be "unity which will make Cambodia strong and enable it to take its
place in the region."
Gen. Keo Kimyan thanked the UNTAC officers for providing training for the soldiers
who will form the country's first military police unit.
The general told the soldiers that even though the training course was very short,
"I think you will now be able to better serve the country even if you don't
have all the skills yet," he said.
Gen. Kimyan also called on the international community to provide more training for
the Cambodian military to help bring it up to the level of its neighbors.
The course, which was taken by 104 soldiers was held over 18 days at Pon Phnom village,
about 18 km northwest of Phnom Penh.
Souv Soka, 34, one of outstanding graduates, said the course had been very hard and
had consisted of many lessons. "I wish it could have been longer. From now on
we will have to do the training, I hope we will be ablt to do it," he said.