The Cambodia Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority (CMAA) yesterday said the UK has pledged $4.3 million in aid to support the Kingdom’s mine clearing operations as part of the UK-funded Global Mine Action Programme Phase II (GMAP2).
CMAA First Vice President Ly Thuch said the implementation of the CMAA’s projects, through the GMAP2, will be extended from April 1 this year to March 30 next year and will cost $4.3 million.
The funds will be distributed by NGOs Halo Trust, Mines Advisory Group and the Norwegian People’s Aid to be allocated for mine clearance, mine risk education and capacity building of the National Mine Action Authority.
“Cambodia and the UK have a joint mission to eliminate landmine and unexploded ordnance casualties in the Kingdom,” said UK ambassador Tina Redshaw..
“Humanitarian mine clearance is a big mission for all of us as we move closer toward realising our goal of being a mine-free nation. When humanitarian forces come together, a brighter day in the Kingdom will come,” he said.
Mr Thuch said since GMAP2 started in July 2018, thousands of mines have already been removed from nearly 20 square kilometres of land.
The programme has strengthened the CMAA’s capacity to effectively manage and coordinate the Cambodian mine action sector. Lastly, it has enabled innovation in mine risk education and has allowed for greater inclusion of people who have suffered permanent disabilities from landmines and UXOs.
According to a CMAA report, there were 77 landmine and UXO cases in 2019, up by 33 percent compared with 58 the year before. Of these, 12 died while 65 were injured – an increase from 10 and 48, respectively, cited in 2018.