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US ordnance found in Kandal, Takeo: officials

A technician removes part of an MK-82 bomb found in Kandal province on Wednesday. Photo supplied
A technician removes part of an MK-82 bomb found in Kandal province on Wednesday. Photo supplied

US ordnance found in Kandal, Takeo: officials

Three 220-kilogram US-made MK-82 bombs were uncovered on Wednesday in Kandal province, according to Heng Ratana, director-general of the Cambodian Mine Action Centre (CMAC), who announced the find in two Facebook posts the same day.

According to one of the posts, CMAC, upon receiving local reports of bombs in four different locations in Kandal Steung district, uncovered and subsequently defused three bombs before transporting them back to the centre.

Returning to what is becoming a common refrain for him, Ratana went on to castigate the US for indiscriminately bombing Cambodia in the 1970s, writing that the site where the bombs were discovered was close to Phnom Penh and “not [part of] Ho Chi Minh’s trail areas”, the ostensible target of much of the US’ bombing runs.

“To the people who still believe that US bombardments of Cambodia only took place near the Vietnamese borders, this proves that it is not true,” he added in Khmer.

Ratana, however, did not mention US bombing sorties carried out against the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s, and could not be reached yesterday. His criticisms came the same day that Prime Minister Hun Sen condemned the US for dropping bombs that injured and killed Cambodian children at a UNICEF conference in Siem Reap.

Another unexploded MK-82 was uncovered in Takeo province on Tuesday, according to a separate post from Ratana.

Nob Dol, Prek Phtorl commune chief in Takeo’s Angkor Borei district, said yesterday that the bomb was first uncovered about a year ago by a farmer, who, fearing the bomb, left it buried.

Local authorities eventually found out and informed CMAC, who went to the site on Tuesday. Dol noted that the area was heavily bombed during the ‘70s, leading to many deaths.

Jovina Chua

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