New York, 4 April 2023 (TDI): On International Day for Mine Action, the European Union reaffirms earnest support for preserving lives.

The EU strongly commits to mitigating the socio-economic impacts of mines and explosives remnants of war including improvised explosive devices.

The statement was delivered by the High Representative of the EU, Josep Borrell, on account of Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action. Mines are inhumane consequences of war.

They harm land and water making it excessively difficult for the civilian population to return to normal life.

Such remnants of war cause huge devastations placing the civilian population and children at the heart of the damage. The tragic consequences have destructive impacts on their lives, environment, and economy.

Therefore, demining is a vital way forward for the reconstruction process for a risk-free future.

On the International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action, the EU commits to preserving lives and alleviating the socio-economic repercussions of explosive remains of war.

The war in Ukraine is currently the primary concern. The country has been facing Russia’s aggression for over a year. The EU has recently announced an additional package worth €25 million to assist Ukraine in its demining efforts.

The EU has been actively engaged in aiding in areas of mine actions across the globe. The mine actions include mine clearance, victims’ assistance, capacity building, and the destruction of remaining stockpiles.

The EU is the world’s second-largest donor as well. It has contributed around over €800 million to humanitarian mine action over the past 6 years, with €90 million in 2022 only. It supports various mine actions in 20 mine-affected countries.

Also read: Joint Nordic Statement on AU’s “Silencing the Guns” Initiative

It has supported demining countries namely Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ukraine, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Burkina Faso, Somalia, and Sri Lanka.

The EU member states are signatories of the Ottawa Treaty therefore it supports the implementation of the Oslo action plan. The member states are strongly committed to banning the use, stockpiling, production, and transfer of anti-personnel mines.

On the occasion, the EU honored the courage and determination of de-miners worldwide. It also commemorated those who lost their lives while demining the affected areas.

The statement highlighted the value of Human life, human dignity, and human rights as the core of the EU’s endeavors to achieve a mine-free world.