The 25th Anniversary of the National Mine Awareness Day

Joint Press Release between the Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority and the United Nations Development Programme

February 22, 2024

Battambang, 22 February – The Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority (CMAA) organised today the 25th Anniversary of Cambodia’s National Mine Awareness Day under the theme “Together Towards Mine/Explosive Remnants of War (ERW) Casualty-Free Communities”, in Battambang Province. The commemoration event aims to raise public awareness on the dangers of landmines and celebrate the achievements of the mine action sector in Cambodia towards the 2025 mine-free goal.

Cambodia adopted clearance of landmines and explosive remnants of war (ERW) as its 18th Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) and has been putting massive efforts into mine action since 1992. With the cooperation of both public and private actors, development partners, national and international organisations, fifteen provinces have been already declared mine-free by the end of 2023, with over 2,300 km2 of land released for safe use.

His Excellency Ly Thuch, Senior Minister and the First Vice-President of the Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority, said, "Through a clear vision shared with our development partners, the country is successfully heading towards the 2025 target of mine-free Cambodia. Today's event has a significant meaning for strengthening the work together as a sector and pursuing the same vision and target.”

He continued, “2024 is an important year for mine action in Cambodia as it is heading towards the Fifth Review Conference of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Antipersonnel Mines and on Their Destruction, known as the Ottawa convention, in November 2024. Cambodia, as president of the Fifth Review Conference, carries a heavy responsibility for raising awareness on mine/ERW at regional and global levels. It will be a significant opportunity for Cambodia to also share its knowledge and capacity built through decades of experience reconfirming its commitment to be mine-free by 2025 and help others address this the plague of mines.”

Ms. Alissar Chaker, Resident Representative of UNDP, said, “Through strong partnerships for landmine clearance, mine risk education, and advocacy, the number of casualties has been decreasing drastically over the years. Indeed, the number of victims decreased from 4,320 in 1996 to just 32 in 2023. But one victim is already too much!”

She added, “UNDP remains a strong and committed partner of the Royal Government of Cambodia in its pursuit of a mine-free Cambodia by 2025 and avoiding more victims.”  

UNDP has started supporting mine action in Cambodia in the nineties. Since 2006, UNDP, Australia, New Zealand, and the Republic of Korea have been working with CMAA through the Clearing for Results (CfRIV) project, providing technical and financial support for mine clearance, mine risk education and victims assistance. The project released 352 square kilometres of land for safe use and local development benefitting nearly 1.2 million people.


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