The Hun Sen government has approved yet another round of mass military promotions, which saw 84 officers being promoted brigadier generals, 43 to major generals and five to lieutenant generals, The Phnom Penh Post reported on Tuesday.
Defence Minister Tea Banh defended the promotions, asking “What is wrong with it?” when reached by The Phnom Penh Post.
The only problem with it, he said was “bad people who say there is a problem and who do not give honour to people who work and serve the nation.”
“The people who have been promoted, they have good achievement, serve the nation. There is also specific period and seniority that must be attained before promotion,” said Tea Banh.
The Cambodian armed forces are already bloated upper echelon with as many as 3,000 generals.
However, Defence Minstry insiders have, in recent interviews, described a widespread sense of embarrassment, particularly among younger officers, over the increase in the upper ranks.
Am Sam Ath of rights group Licadho said the military gave promotions and pay bumps to soldiers who have cracked down on demonstrations.