SRI LANKA

Mine clearance | Project duration: 2019-2021

Civil war raged in Sri Lanka for 16 years from 1983 to 2009. Around 100,000 people lost their lives. Both warring parties – the governmental troops and the LTTE, the Tamil military organisation – mined huge swathes of land and left behind countless remnants of war. Mine-clearing activities began in 2002 while fighting was still ongoing, but a part of the demined areas were later recontaminated. The current government is working to free Sri Lanka from mines and in 2018 ratified both the Ottawa Treaty and the Oslo Treaty and is very committed to demining. It seems quite realistic that Sri Lanka could be mine free in 3-4 years.

A deminer removes vegetation in order to be able to examine the ground for mines
A deminer removes vegetation in order to be able to examine the ground for mines
These men and women are clearing mines in Sri Lanka
These men and women are clearing mines in Sri Lanka

The project

This is the first project in Sri Lanka for World Without Mines. We will finance a 28-strong demining team from the local organisation Delvon Assistance for Social Harmony (DASH) for a period of one year. The team members belong to various ethnic groups, often come from destitute backgrounds and are able to achieve economic independence through their work. Demining activities promote mutual understanding and contribute towards reconciliation and sustainable peace in the country.

What we want to achieve

We are working to help Sri Lanka achieve its goal of freedom from mines as soon as possible. By supporting DASH, we are also providing jobs and therefore an income for people from destitute families that help build their self-confidence and benefit the whole family.

Results 2019

776 anti-personnel mines, 166 unexploded ordnances (UXO) and 275 other explosive remnants of war have been identified and disposed of.

70 524 square meters of land have been released for use.

332 people now have safe access to their land resources. 5 783 people have been sensitised to the risks.

Pictures: DASH and HALO Trust

 

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