that elevated scrap metal prices in Thailand motivate villagers in Cambodia to collect scrap more actively and consistently.(4) Many in the mine action sector currently believe that the recent spiking of UXO casualties in Cambodia is a direct reflection of market influences.

Qualitative research indicates that scrap metal is also being sold to Vietnamese merchants and transported to Vietnam through the Mekong delta via barges.(5) Recent discussions with UXO workers and Mine Risk Education professionals working in Laos and Vietnam clearly demonstrate that UXO recycling is thriving on a regional level, and has become a pressing issue throughout SE Asia.(6)

The economic framework that has allowed UXO recycling to flourish in the past two years is loosely structured as follows:

At the village level, scrap metal collectors actively use metal detectors to locate ordnance, and the remnants of ordnance, scattered throughout their local area. If they discover only metal debris, the metal is transported and sold to a village middleman.(7) The price paid for grade one (ordnance quality metal) at the village level ranges between 350-600 riel per kilo (US $.08 - .15 cents).(8) The village middleman typically transports the metal to a larger scrap yard in a If, however, the scrap metal collector discovers an unsafe item, an extensive process of preparing the UXO for sale is undertaken.
Disassembly of live UXO typically is done by villagers within the community who have prior military experience, but no EOD training. After the ordnance is secured above ground - using primitive pulley systems from as deep as six meters below the surface - the workers prepare for cutting. Hacksaws are the most common tools chosen to cut the ordnance, and workers often have to use multiple blades on larger items of ordnance. Throughout this stage of disassembly, the workers pour water on the hacksaw incisions in an attempt to cool the metal as they cut through the outer skin of the ordnance. If the workers succeed in safely cutting the ordnance into at least two parts, the TNT is then removed. The detonator is often destroyed by building a fire inside the nose of the ordnance, and then retreating

Footnotes:
(4) Field Interview with Yun Te, scrap metal collector, Kompong Thom Province, January, 2005.

(5) Telephone Interview with Mr. Naren, interpreter, Poipet, Cambodia, December, 2004. Information based upon fieldwork in Takeo province.
(6) Discussions at MRE Conference, Siem Riep, Cambodia, November 15-16, 2004.
(7) Interview with Heang Neng, scrap metal collector, Kompong Thom Province, October, 2004.
(8) Interview with San Sophi, scrap metal yard owner, Kompong Thom Province, January, 2005