Sappers are searching for war-left bombs and mines (Source: VNA)

Quang Tri (VNA) – Several foreign-funded projects have been conducted in the central province of Quang Tri over the past two decades, helping the locality to clear bombs and mines left from war.

Quang Tri is one of localities most affected by the aftermath of war, with 81 percent of the province’s total area polluted with unexploded ordnance (UXO). 

Statistics from the provincial centre for overcoming bomb and mine consequences show that by April 2018, bomb and mine accidents had killed 3,430 people and injured 5,100 others, including many children.

Demining projects in Quang Tri have been funded by many foreign agencies, including the foreign ministries of Germany, the US and Norway, the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development of Germany, the UK’s Department for International Development, Ireland’s development assistance fund, UNICEF and the US organisation Peace Trees.

The projects have helped clear 132 million sq.m of seriously polluted areas, and safely handle more than 650,000 bombs, mines and other UXO. 

More than 350,000 people were provided with knowledge and skills to prevent UXO accidents via the “Mine Risk Education (MRE)” programme.

Local authorities have also paid attention to supporting local victims of war-era UXO, helping them improve their living conditions and re-integrate into the community.

Non-governmental organisations have financed the building of 332 humanitarian houses, and directly aided 215 UXO victims and their families.

Some 1,200 UXO victims who are living with disabilities were provided with medical examination and prosthetics and other orthopedic instruments, while 50 disabled people and medical workers were trained in community-based rehabilitation.

Nguyen Duc Thien from the provincial centre for overcoming bomb and mine consequences said demining projects have contributed to expanding safe land area for production in the locality.

To improve the work, the locality will set up a mine action centre, he said, adding that Quang Tri hopes to receive greater support and resources for the scheme.-VNA