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Today's Mine Action News (2nd August 2016)

Posted on August, 2 2016

AFRICA

Angola
It's Time for Angola to Ratify the Convention on Cluster Munitions
[CMC] Angola was one of nearly 100 countries to sign the Convention on Cluster Munitions on December 3, 2008 in Oslo, Norway. This was the first day on which countries could sign the Convention. In the eight years since then, Angola has made several statements in support of the Convention, but has not yet ratified it. Based upon what I saw and heard during my recent visit to Angola, I am certain that Angola's ratification of the Convention is long overdue.

Libya
UNMAS Provides Training to Libyans Working Humanitarian Mine Action in Benghazi and Surrounding Areas
[UNSMIL] The United Nations Mine Actions Service (UNMAS) started a three-week Non-Technical Survey (NTS) course on July 18, aimed at training ten Libyan nationals currently working in the field of mine action in Benghazi and surrounding areas. 

ASIA

Afghanistan
Afghanistan Midyear Report 2016; Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict
[UNAMA] The Midyear report on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict in Afghanistan for 2016 was prepared by the Human Rights Unit of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and covers the period from 1 January to 30 June 2016. 

Cambodia
Farmer Digs Up Ammunition Boxes
[Khmer Times] Twelve cases of 12.7mm machine gun ammunition were found by a farmer in Banteay Meanchey’s Malai district on Saturday, according to the National Police website, while elsewhere in the province 16 home-made guns were found.
 
Survivor: War Ends but Suffering Remains
[Khner Times] Forty-six-year-old Phon Chet, who lost his left leg to cluster bombs 14 years ago, sits with other impaired people at a rehabilitation center in Kampong Cham province during a media tour on Thursday.

Lao PDR
Helping Accident Survivors in Laos
[UCA News] An organization called World Education is helping survivors of Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) accidents via a peer-to-peer support program. 

Iraq
Can Iraq Overcome Its Landmine Infestation?
[Al-Monitor] Iraq is one of the worst-off countries in the world in terms of minefield and projectile pollution, with 25 million land mines and other unexploded ordnances scattered across the country.​ The concentration is especially dense in Iraqi Kurdistan, and efforts to clear the land are meeting with a number of obstacles.

Palestine
EU Contributes EUR 800,000 to Support the United Nations Mine Action Service Intervention in Gaza [Arabic]
[EU - UNMAS] The European Union (EU) has contributed EUR 800,000 to UNMAS through the Voluntary Trust Fund for Assistance in Mine Action. This critical financial
support from EU will enable UNMAS to continue protecting civilians and supporting reconstruction in Gaza

Syria
Cluster Munitions Harm in Syria on Anniversary of the Ban
[Huffington Post] Part of the challenge with documenting the fast-moving war in Syria is that research can become outdated as soon as it’s published. For example, last Thursday, Human Rights Watch issued a new report on more than 47 cluster munition attacks by the Syrian government’s joint operation with Russia on opposition-controlled areas over the past two months, killing and wounding dozens of civilians.

Vietnam
7 Vietnamese Caught with 3 Large Vietnam War bombs
[Thanh Nien News] Seven men in central Vietnam are being probed after they were caught transporting three bombs from the Vietnam War era.  Police said the men, six from Quang Tri Province and another from the neighboring Quang Binh, had rented equipment to unearth bombs. 

AMERICAS

Chile
Bolivians Are Braving Landmines and the World's Driest Desert to Get Into Chile
[VICE] "Two years ago there was a considerable amount of rainfall and it overflowed the river — and the landmines spread," said Cerda. "The government doesn't know where they are anymore."

EUROPE

Ukraine
Ukraine Prepares Bill on Mine Action Based on Current Standards
[Interfax] The Cabinet of Ministers will soon consider a draft law on mine action, which is based on international practice and reflects current standards in this field.

GLOBAL

The Journal of Conventional Weapons Destruction: Issue 20.2, July 2016
[JMU] (P42 - ) According to the Small Arms Survey, around 526,000 persons are killed every year as a result of armed violence, and many more sustain injuries requiring medical and rehabilitative care that severely impacts their lives. In West Africa, the propagation of small arms and light weapons (SA/LW) escalates armed conflicts and
affects the security and the stability of the eitire Sahel region.

How Unexploded Ordnance Is Cleared
[Economist] This month marks the 100th anniversary of the battle of the Somme, in France, which claimed over 1m casualties. A century after the guns fell silent, bomb-disposal units are still working to corral unexploded shells, grenades, shrapnel, mines and other deadly ordnance, often uncovered by farmers as they plough the fields. 

Happy 1 August
[CMC] 1 August 2016 marks the 6th anniversary of the entry into force of the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

 

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