World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


UN Helps Iraq Clear 500 km of Unexploded Mines

UN Helps Iraq Clear 500 Kilometres of Land of Deadly Unexploded Mines

New York, Jun 20 2005 11:00AM

Nearly 500 square kilometres in Iraq have been cleared of landmines over the past year thanks to United Nations-backed efforts to rid the country of potentially deadly unexploded remnants of war, most of them seeded in densely populated regions in the centre and south, the world body announced today.

“Mine action is crucial not only to the safety of the Iraqi people but also to their economic advancement,” said Staffan de Mistura, Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s Deputy Special Representative for Humanitarian, Reconstruction and Development Affairs.

“Dangerous areas cannot be farmed, but safe land is potentially productive land,” he added. “And agricultural production feeds not only people but also development.”

Approximately one out of every five Iraqis – or 5.4 million people – lives within one kilometre of areas highly contaminated by explosive remnants of war.

Since the Security Council outlined the mandate of the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) roughly one year ago, the world body’s presence has helped boost national efforts to cope with the legacy of successive wars endured by the Iraqi people in recent decades.

With $3 million in donor funding, the UN launched a project which has trained over two dozen National Explosive Ordnance Disposal Teams from the National Mine Action Authority.

Over 490,380 square meters have been cleared thanks to the removal of 3,715 mines or other explosive ordnance items, such as shells.

The UN has also provided staff to Iraq’s National Mine Action Authority while helping it to develop information materials – including posters and television spots – aimed at alerting families, especially children, to the dangers of unexploded remnants of war.

Minefields in Iraq date back to the First World War, but these “crops of war” are mainly the result of more recent violence, including the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s, conflicts between rival ethnic and political parties, the military actions of 1990/1991 and the ongoing war, which started in 2003.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>

ALSO:

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news