Bern, 1 September 2023 (TDI): In a recent tweet on X, the Swiss Ambassador to Sweden, François Voeffray-Peyro, made a significant announcement that highlighted the strong support from the Swiss Defense Ministry for the state emergency service of Ukraine.
This support comes in the form of cutting-edge remote-control demining machines for effectively and safely clearing the areas from mines, cluster bombs, and unexploded ordnance.
Swiss Ministry of Defence 🇨🇭 is providing the State Emergency Service of Ukraine 🇺🇦 with a remote-controlled #demining machine to safely and efficiently clear areas that have been contaminated with mines, cluster munitions and explosive remnants of war.👉https://t.co/tYsp635qhZ pic.twitter.com/0989I4F3Fa
— Ambassador François Voeffray Peyro (@SwissAmbSweden) August 31, 2023
Following Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the extensive region is cultivated with a dangerous combination of mines, cluster munition, and explosive remnants of war that have increased in massive quantities.
This machine was donated by the Swiss Digger Foundation and was presented on August 29 to the Swiss Federal Department of Defense, Civil Protection and Sport.
The machine is ready for delivery and will be transported to Ukraine in September through trucks provided by the Life Foundation.
The machine successfully neutralizes the anti-personnel before detonating them making the cluster mutation safe and preventing it from exploding. This was done by using the denotation method or by using a roller to safely deactivate the mines.
The package donated by the Swiss Defense Ministry to Ukraine includes tracked machines designed to neutralize anti-personnel mines and a three-year comprehensive spare parts package.
In addition to these materials, Digger Foundation will conduct on-site training for Ukraine authorities. The total price of this package amounts to CHF 1.2 million, which is approximately $1.3 million.
Frederic Guerne, Director and Founder of Digger Foundation communicated to Keystone (Swiss News Agency) that the project resulted from an idea by the Defense Minister of Switzerland, Viola Amhered.
He further mentioned that by the end of June this year, another machine of the same type should be ready for delivery to Ukraine. At the same time, a third project is also in progress.
As per media reports in March, Switzerland gave USD 540 million to Ukraine for clearing mines and maintaining civilian infrastructure.
Switzerland’s contribution to Ukraine aims to advance the safety and effectiveness of demining efforts within Ukraine.