Peacekeeping: Mine Clearing in Afghanistan


January16, 2007: One aid effort that the Taliban have not attacked in Afghanistan is the mine clearing operation. This employs 8,000 Afghans, and less than a hundred foreigners. Last year, this force cleared over 130 million square meters of dangerous material. In doing this, they removed over 500 mines, and more than 700,000 pieces of unexploded munitions (shells, grenades, rockets, bombs). Since the effort began in 1989, 1.17 billion square meters have been cleared, and another 600 million meters remains to be done. This effort saves lives. This past years, about 60 Afghans a month were killed or wounded by uncleared ordnance. Five years ago, the monthly average was 138.




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