Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - CMAC officials inspect 340kg American bomb in Kampong Speu province

CMAC officials inspect 340kg American bomb in Kampong Speu province

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Villagers in Kong Pisei district, Kampong Speu province discover an American M117 bomb. Photo supplied

CMAC officials inspect 340kg American bomb in Kampong Speu province

A US M117 bomb weighing 340kg was found in Kampong Speu province’s Chamkar Doung village on Monday, with Cambodian Mine Action Centre (CMAC) officials inspecting the unexploded ordnance the following day, CMAC director Heng Ratana said on Tuesday.

Ratana said villagers reported the discovery to local police and CMAC officials after finding the bomb in Kong Pisei district’s Prey Vihear commune while cultivating their land.

On Tuesday CMAC inspected the large device, prohibiting people from the area as they prepared it for removal to a secure area.

Keo Sarath, the director of CMAC’s Unit 5, told The Post on Tuesday that the bomb was still dangerous. “It could easily explode if removed carelessly”, he said.

“While cultivating their land, villagers found [the bomb] which was dropped during the war era [of the 1970s]. After that, they were shocked and afraid. The CMAC team was scheduled to remove the bomb on Tuesday after inspecting it,” Ratana said.

Khem Sophanra, Kong Pisei district police chief, told The Post that villagers unearthed the bomb while working on their rice field with tractors. Despite its age, it looked relatively new, he said, with little rust.

“After experts inspect the bomb, they will remove it to a secure area. The bomb is about one metre in length and weighs over 300kg,” he said.

Ratana said that between 1963 and 1975, the US dropped a huge number of bombs on Cambodia.

In 2000, former US President Bill Clinton released documents revealing that more than 2.8 million tonnes of conventional and chemical bombs were dropped on the Kingdom during that time.

The bombing campaign was said to have been mounted to destroy North Vietnamese Army units but killed over half a million Cambodians.

MOST VIEWED

  • NY sisters inspired by Khmer heritage

    Growing up in Brooklyn, New York, Cambodian-American sisters Edo and Eyen Chorm have always felt a deep affinity for their Cambodian heritage and roots. When the pair launched their own EdoEyen namesake jewellery brand in June, 2020, they leaned heavily into designs inspired by ancient Khmer

  • Cambodia records first Omicron community case

    The Ministry of Health on January 9 reported 30 new Covid-19 cases, 29 of which were imported and all were confirmed to be the Omicron variant. The ministry also reported 11 recoveries and no new deaths. Earlier on January 9, the ministry also announced that it had detected the Kingdom's

  • 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

  • PM eyes Myanmar peace troika

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has suggested that ASEAN member states establish a tripartite committee or diplomatic troika consisting of representatives from Cambodia, Brunei and Indonesia that would be tasked with mediating a ceasefire in Myanmar. The premier also requested that Nippon Foundation chairman Yohei Sasakawa

  • Kampot tourism quay ‘90% done’

    Construction on Kampot International Tourism Port – a 4ha quay in Teuk Chhou district about 6km west of Kampot town – has fallen off track, reaching 90 per cent completion, according to a senior Ministry of Tourism official last week. The project is now planned to be finished

  • Demining rat ‘hero’ Magawa dead at 8

    A landmine-hunting rat that was awarded a gold medal for heroism for clearing ordnance from the Cambodian countryside has died, his charity said on January 11. Magawa, a giant African pouched rat originally from Tanzania, helped clear mines from about 225,000sqm of land – the equivalent of 42