(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) –The German Federal Foreign Office (GFFO) provides 4 million Euros (approx. LKR 800m) for demining in affected areas of the Northern and Eastern Provinces.
The GFFO made this decision in light of Sri Lanka’s accession to the Ottawa Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention to assist Sri Lanka to be a mine-impact free country by 2020.
It will be carried out by two non-governmental organisations the HALO Trust and the Mines Advisory Group (MAG).
The HALO trust, one of the largest international mine action operators in the country, will use 2 m Euros by the GFFO for the project titled “Humanitarian Mine Clearance in Northern Sri Lanka” over the course of two years in Jaffna, Kilinochchi, and Mullaitivu and is expected to strengthen the reconciliation by removing 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. The project will demobilize 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 2 million Euros to clear mine. It will focus on the Northern and Eastern provinces in Mannar, Trincomalee, Killinochchi and Mulaithivu.
Their objective is to release a minimum of 1,110,480 m² of land in these areas to help provide immediate safety to families, both residents and IDP returnees which is vital for sustainable resettlement, livelihood and other socio-economic development.
This will be achieved in cooperation with 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.