PHNOM PENH, -- South Korea has given more than 200 military vehicles to Cambodia and nearly 200 more will arrive in July.
The first batch were handed over yesterday at a ceremony at the Techo Hun Sen Military Technical Institute in Kampong Speu province.
The trucks, light utility vehicles, excavators, bulldozers, buses, ambulances and cars were deployed in rows in the area where the ceremony took place.
General Chao Phirun, the director-general of the Defense Ministry’s materiel and technical services department, said it was the third time Cambodia had received military aid from South Korea.
He said the 222 vehicles included 208 vehicles of all kinds and 14 pieces of engineering machinery, along with spare parts.
Gen. Phirun said military aid amounting to 145 vehicles, including two patrol boats and eight pieces of engineering machinery, would arrive from South Korea in July.
“The South Korean government could give 30 to 50 more military trucks as well as some spare parts,” he said.
In 2010, Cambodia received 188 vehicles including military trucks, 66 pieces of engineering machinery and utility boats for the navy.
In 2012, a further 212 vehicles and 29 pieces of machinery were granted to Cambodia.
Last August, South Korean military attache to Cambodia Colonel Yung Yeong Chang and incoming attache Colonel Yoo Beom Gi promised to strengthen cooperation with the kingdom.
They met Neang Phat, a secretary of state at the Defense Ministry, and agreed to provide military equipment.
Speaking in the ceremony yesterday, South Korean Vice-Minister of National Defense Kang Byung Joo said 22 types of military vehicles and military engineering machinery had been granted to Cambodia since 2010.
“Following this handover, I believe that it will contribute to promoting the relationship of both countries, enhancing the security capacity of Cambodian military officers and improve military facilities,” he said.
Mr. Kang said Cambodia supports peace and security in his country and had joined the international community to speak out against North Korea’s nuclear test.
Last year, the Cambodian government called for North Korea to fully respect UN resolutions and urged North Korea to comply with all concerned parties to resolve tensions through peaceful negotiations.
Defense Minister Tea Banh said the military aid from South Korea helped the kingdom’s military bring more types of transport into its training.
He said the vehicles would be distributed to various ministry units to maintain social order and peace in Cambodia.
China is also a big donor of military aid to Cambodia. After the ceremony, Gen. Banh said there would be more military aid from other countries in response to Cambodia’s needs, but he did not name the countries.
The Republic South Korea on 23 March handed over 208 military trucks and 14 engineering vehicles to Cambodia as part of a military aid package.