Growing Concern Over Potential Chinese Military Presence in Cambodia’s Ream Naval Base

There is increasing concern about China’s growing military influence over neighboring Cambodia, with potential Chinese military presence at Cambodia’s Ream Naval Base and as well as a regular stream of weapons and military equipment sent to the country from China.

Recent satellite imagery indicates that the naval base is being prepared for an HQ-surface-to-air missile (SAM) battery, as per a report by news wire agency ANI. The possibility of this was first raised by Tom Shugart, an Adjunct Senior Fellow with the Defense Program at the Centre for a New American Security.

He had noted that a road along the eastern edge of the base features a number of paved pads or enlargements cut out of the jungle. The design of the road with multiple 10-12 laybys closely resembles an installation built by the PLA to protect Yalong Naval Base on Hainan Island in 2016, Shugart noted. The area now accommodates HQ-9 SAM battery with missile launcher vehicles and radars.

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