US renews funding for war-left bomb clearance in Cambodia

The United States on Wednesday opened a 2-million-U.S.dollar tender to help clear unexploded ordnance in Cambodia.

The tender was opened, two weeks after Cambodia said that the United States stopped funding for clearing its old bombs.

The U.S. embassy said in a statement that applications were now being accepted for a 2 million U.S. dollars, one-year grant to survey and clear unexploded ordnance in eastern Cambodia.

It added that eligible partners would use state-of-the art methodology to clear land of unexploded ordnance in eastern Cambodia, so it could be made safe for farming, roads, commerce, and housing.

“The United States has supported humanitarian demining in Cambodia for over 20 years and is committed to addressing our war-time legacy.

“This new tender is a continuation of those commitments as it will further aid in the cleanup of the remnants of war,’’ U.S. ambassador to Cambodia William Heidt said.

“We are looking for the best national and international experts to help remove unexploded ordnance in the east of Cambodia,’’ he said.

It is estimated that between 1965 and 1973, the United States dropped about 2.7 million tons of explosives in Cambodia during the Vietnam War era.

The relations between Cambodia and the United States have became strained in recent months after the Cambodian government accused the United States of secretly supporting jailed opposition leader Kem Sokha to oust the government.

The United States denied the allegation. (Xinhua/NAN)