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UNMAS celebrates the International Mine Awareness Day in Darfur. Photo: UNMAS/UNAMID

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The five states of Darfur have been mired in conflict since 2003. Up to 300,000 people have died and at least 2.6 million displaced from their homes.

UNMAS began its operations in Darfur in 2005, as the Western Region Mine Action Office. On 1 January 2008, UNMAS became an integral component of the United Nations-African Union hybrid operation in Darfur (UNAMID) designated as the Ordnance Disposal Office (ODO). ODO has its main office in El Fasher and five sector offices in El Fasher, Nyala, El Geneina, Zalingei and El Daein.

Following a unilateral declaration of cessation of hostilities by the Government of Sudan and the main non-signatory armed movements in 2016, there has been considerable reduction in the level of conflict. This has allowed ODO access to areas that were hitherto inaccessible. While fighting between government forces and the rebel groups have significantly reduced, inter-communal violence continues to take place with new ERW contaminations reported.

In line with Security Council Resolution 1769 (2007) and with further amendments, ODO is mandated to support Mission tasks including: protection of civilians, facilitation of the delivery of humanitarian assistance and the safety and security of UNAMID and humanitarian personnel. This support is provided through five broad activities. As of 1 July 2017, Jebel Marra area has become the missions priority for ERW activities.


In response to the ERW contamination, ODO deploys Multi-Task teams with a special focus to areas where armed hostilities have occurred and communities hosting internally displaced persons, especially in the Jebel Marra area. Such activities provide a safer environment and improved freedom of movement among the local population.

Through risk education activities, communities are informed of the threat of ERW in their areas and how to stay safe. The ERW risk education aims at achieving behavioural change among the communities at risk.

ODO provides technical support and capacity building to the national mine action authority, building on its existing capability so as to enhance a sustainable national capacity.

ODO conducts weapon and ammunition management initiatives with national security actors to help reduce the potential theft of small arms and ammunition and mitigate the risk of unplanned explosions at storage facilities. ODO also provides technical support to UNAMID Military and Formed Police Units to support compliance with International Ammunition Technical Guidelines (IATG).

ODO has supported assistance to survivors of ERW accidents through income-generation activities, the construction of vocational centers and training in vocational skills such as carpentry, welding, sewing.


ODO activities are fully funded from the UNAMID Assessed Budget. For 2017/2018 fiscal year, ODO’s services cover the following ERW activities: survey and clearance, risk education, victim assistance and national capacity enhancement.

Updated: March 2018

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  • In support of the protection of civilians mandate, ODO has conducted general explosive hazard assessments and explosive ordnance disposal tasks in 2,554 villages across Darfur. The tasks resulted in the closing of 1,135 reported dangerous areas (DAS), safe disposal of 41,184 explosive remnants of war (ERW) and the destruction of 2,316,806 small arms ammunition.
  • 1,179,983 beneficiaries received ERW risk education (including 262,237 men, 264,475 women, 386,697 boys and 316,754 girls). 17,647 UNAMID personnel received ERW safety awareness training (including police advisors, military observers, civilians and formed police unit personnel).



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