Germany grants four million euros for humanitarian mine clearance | Sunday Observer

Germany grants four million euros for humanitarian mine clearance

Risking life and limb to clear mines
Risking life and limb to clear mines

The German Federal Foreign Office (GFFO) provides a total sum of 4 Million Euros (approx. 800 Mn LKR) towards demining activities in affected areas of the Northern and Eastern Provinces in Sri Lanka. The GFFO took this decision in the light of Sri Lanka’s accession to the Ottawa Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention, with the aim of assisting Sri Lanka to achieve the target of becoming a mine-impact free country by 2020.

The implementation will be carried out by two non-governmental organisations, the HALO Trust and Mines Advisory Group (MAG).

Utilising a grant of two million Euros by the GFFO, the HALO trust, one of the largest international mine action operators in the country, is implementing the project titled ‘Humanitarian Mine Clearance in Northern Sri Lanka, over the course of two years in the districts of Jaffna, Kilinochchi, and Mullaitivu and is expected to strengthen the reconciliation process by removing the threat of landmines and other Explosive Remnants of War, allowing resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and improving security and livelihoods for the people of northern Sri Lanka.

In addition to this, the project will also allow for demobilisation training where the staff funded under this initiative will gain knowledge and skills to improve their post mine clearance livelihoods.

The Mines Advisory Group (MAG) also received a grant assistance of two million Euros to carry out humanitarian mine clearance which will be focused in Mannar, Trincomalee, Killinochchi and Mulaithivu districts both in the Northern and Eastern provinces.

Their objective, during the two years of the project implementation, is to release a minimum of 1,110,480 m² of land in the aforementioned areas to help provide immediate safety to families, both resident population and IDP returnees which is vital for sustainable resettlement, livelihood and other socio-economic development.

This will be achieved in cooperation with their the local implementing partner Delvon Assistance for Social Harmony (DASH) which will help regulate their land release activities and demining operations.

MAG has been active in Sri Lanka since 2002 to help destroy landmines, cluster munitions and unexploded ordnance.

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