The Ministry of Interior is discussing on a draft of the general provision on the establishment of community security guards. The informal volunteer guards, sometimes referred to as village security guards, have been operating widely since 1999, but have never been regulated.

The June 6 meeting was chaired by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sar Kheng, and attended by ministry secretary of state Mao Chandara and several leading ministry officials.

During the meeting, Sar Kheng said that many villages have deployed security forces since 1999, following the successful 1998 implementation of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s win-win policy, and the onset of peace.

The village guards work alongside local police forces to provide security and protect public order.

He noted that they also took part in fighting against colour revolutions and maintained security during the 2022 commune elections.

He said, however, that although they receive widespread support from the public, no measures have been introduced to govern their operations,

Having taken note of their positive contribution, he initiated a study into regulating their organisation and activities, and explained that his initiative was progressing well.

“The village security guard movement is supported by the voluntary participation of members of the public to protecting public order and the lives and property of people in villages and communes. They are under the command of local police forces,” he explained.

Sar Kheng said the ministry would continue to collect input into the draft, to ensure that the final regulations would be implemented smoothly and efficiently.