Cambodia Mine Action Background Report


Cambodia is heavily contaminated with anti-personnel mines and cluster munition remnants.


According to the report Clearing the Mines 2020, which was published by Mine Action Review for the Eighteenth Meeting of States Parties to the 1997 Anti-Personnel Mine      Ban Convention, as of 1 October 2020, 57 States and 3 other areas still had anti-personnel mines in mined areas under their jurisdiction or control.[1] In 2019, at least 5,554 casualties of mines/ERW were recorded. Children accounted for 43% of all civilian casualties where the age was known.[2] Asia (including the Middle East) is the most affected      continent by number of countries, with 23 mine-contaminated States.[3]


Cambodia has extensive contamination from mines and explosive remnants of war (ERW) left by 30 years of conflict that ended in the 1990s. It has a significant cluster    munition contamination problem in the north-east resulting from aerial bombardment by U.S. forces between 1965 and 1975.[4] Besides, it is estimated that four million anti-personnel mines were laid after the fall of the Khmer Rouge between 1979 and 1998. Cambodia’s anti-personnel mine problem is concentrated in, but not limited to, 21 north-western districts along the border with Thailand, which account for the large majority of mine casualties.[5] A large proportion of the cluster munition remnants (CMR) contamination is located in the eastern provinces close to the border with Vietnam.[6] The total of casualties from landmines and ERW recorded in Cambodia from 1979 until December 2020 was 64,920.[7]


As a State Party of the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention, Cambodia has committed to the ambition to be free of landmines by 2025 with a comprehensive National Mine Action Strategy to completion. Since 1993, with the help of the international community, including China, significant achievements have been made. The total size of the released area is approximately 2,149 km2[8]


As of December 2019, Cambodia estimated the remaining anti-personnel mine contamination as over 817km2 across 9,539 suspected hazardous areas (SHAs).[9]

From 2020 to 2025, Cambodia has estimated it will require $372 million for mine action, of which $38 million is for sector management and $165 million for release of the anti-personnel mined area.[10]


To accelerate the complete clearance of mine globally, in recent years, China has provided experts, training, and equipment to assist the mine clearance operations in Cambodia.



[1] See the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction.

[2] Landmine Monitor 2020, published by Monitoring and Research Committee, ICBL-CMC Governance Board, on 12 November 2020.

[3][5][6][9][10] Clearing the Mines 2020 Report for the Eighteenth Meeting of States Parties to the 1997 Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention, prepared by Mine Action Review for the Eighteenth Meeting of States Parties to the 1997 Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention (Geneva, 16–20 November 2020).

[4] Doing no harm? Mine action and land issues in Cambodia. Report published by Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD) in 2014.

[7][8] Provided by Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority (CMAA).


Author: Yu Ruichuan

Editor: Li Ling