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Cambodia to conduct live fire drill next week


20:04, March 20, 2013

KAMPONG SPEU, Cambodia, March 20 (Xinhua) -- Cambodia will conduct a live fire drill on Thursday next week in order to strengthen the capacity of armed forces, Deputy Prime Minister and defense minister Tea Banh said Wednesday.

"It is usual to train our soldiers with new weapon technologies. We need to train our troops on field to make sure that they can some kinds of new weapons effectively and safely," he told reporters after closing a training course for Cambodian peacekeeping forces in Kampong Speu province.

"In the forthcoming exercise, BM-21 rocket launchers will be fired," he said.

The drill will be held at a military exercise field in Kampong Speu province, about 70 kilometers west of Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia.

It will be the second time that the country conducts the live fire drill with BM21 rockets. The first one was made in March 2010. At that time, 215 shells were fired and all had hit the target in the distance between 20 km and 40 km.

Prime Minister Hun Sen said at that time that the prices of one BM-21 range were between 1,200 U.S. dollars and 3,800 U.S. dollars.

Cambodia has begun to strengthen its defense capacity since it has territorial dispute with Thailand in 2008. The dispute had triggered several times of deadly armed clashes between the two countries' troops.

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