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Over 5,000 UXO items destroyed in Huaphan through CAMA project

Over 5,000 UXO items have been destroyed and cleared from agriculture and infrastructure development areas through the Comprehensive Approach to Reduce the Impact of Unexploded Ordnance on Human Safety and Rural Livelihoods in Huaphan province (CAMA) project.
The statistic was reported during the recent Project Closure Event in Huaphan province, after the CAMA project was implemented by HI, Oxfam, GRET/BNDA and

local authorities in 44 villages of Huameuang district. The Project Closure Event was attended by the EU Ambassador to Laos, EU programme manager, and representatives of the Lao government.
The meeting reported that 2.8 million square metres of land had been surveyed, 1.04 million square metres cleared, 48 suspected minefields inventoried and 5,377 UXO items had been detonated or deactivated.
All of the cleared areas can now be used for agriculture and the construction of buildings such as schools and hospitals. In terms of UXO victim assistance, the number of people with disabilities and UXO survivors was identified as 976, of whom 108 were taken to medical/rehabilitation facilities in Vientiane and in Huaphan and Xieng Khuang provinces. Through recovery, it is hoped they can better integrate into their communities.
Mine Risk Education took place in 44 target villages among 29,469 adults and children, who are now more aware of the risks of UXO, thus making them less vulnerable to the risk of accidents. The project is considered a good example of an initiative that has successfully combined UXO and livelihood activities, thereby improving sustainable livelihoods.
Speaking at the event, the Ambassador of the EU Delegation to Laos, Ms Ina Marčiulionytė, said “I am very pleased to attend today the closing ceremony of the UXO project, which has been implemented in Huaphan province from January 2018 to May 2021.
As concluded by the final evaluation, the project has resulted in a number of significant achievements, for which I would like to congratulate the project team and partners.
“Through EU cooperation under the EJP programme for 2021-2025, I am fully aware that UXO contamination remains a main challenge to development activities in Laos and has been localised as Sustainable Development Goal 18 under the 9th National Socio-economic Development Programme.
“Even though there is no specific budget for the UXO sector under the new joint programme, we see that it is still relevant when our new programmes start and to take into account how UXO support could be integrated in our focal areas, relating to agriculture, nutrition and food security.
“For example, under the new cooperation strategy, we are discussing a possible collaboration with France (a member state) to support coffee cultivation in Huaphan.
“I would like to congratulate the project partners once again for having been able to maintain progress on project actions in spite of the Covid-19 pandemic. Nowadays, in the new “normal”, collaborating online has indeed become a key component of any internationalisation strengthening process.”

 

 

ByTimes Reporters
(Latest Update
June 15,
2021)


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