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Government Looks To Build Reserve Military Force

The Council of Ministers passed a decree Friday that would begin to create a reserve force, despite previous government policy to reduce military spending.

Friday's decree would draw a reservist force from early resignations, soldiers who have completed their enlistments or even “experts” who have ben involved in military tasks.

The broadening of the military comes at a time of increasing countrywide nationalism that has been spurred by on ongoing border dispute between Cambodia and Thailand. The decree also follows a 2006 law that provides for military conscription.

“The Ministry of Defense will train the reservists on fighting tactics and defense tactics as a base,” Thum Sotheat, a three-star general and a spokesman for the Ministry of Defense, told VOA Khmer.

The training could also include specialties, such as engineering, construction or medical work, he said.