Unit 58 Explosive Ordnance Disposal Level 1 Training Course Closing Ceremony
August 18, 2023
Vientiane Capital, 18 August 2023- As a national UXO operator, the Humanitarian Demining Teams of the Lao People’s Army (Unit 58) has a vital role in leveraging the achievement of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and the Lao Government's international obligation to the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM). Today, 62 Unit 58 trainees marked their successful accomplishment of the Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Level 1 training course at the UXO National Training Centre with support from Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) through United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
In 2023, 113 staff of Humanitarian Demining teams were trained to date, including 13 women, and they will be deployed to Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) contaminated provinces, Bolikhamxay, Vientiane and Xaisomboun, to survey and clear UXOs to ensure safe access and secure livelihood in populated areas.
Accordingly, with the support of the Government of the Republic of Korea through KOICA, UNDP and the National Regulatory Authority for the UXO/Mine Action Sector in Lao PDR (NRA) are committed to strengthening the national clearance capacity through Unit 58 as a long-term solution for UXO risk management in Lao PDR.
This year, 4 new teams of Humanitarian Demining Teams have been established in addition to 7 existing teams. UNDP, NRA, and the Ministry of National Defense are committed to having a total of 20 teams of Unit 58 get ready for UXO actions in Bolikhamxay, Vientiane, and Xaisomboun provinces before the year ends.
“I believe that the expansion and capacity building of Unit 58 will contribute to addressing the current challenges of the UXO sector against the national UXO clearance target in the 9th National Socio-Economic Development Plan (NSEDP) and the ten-year National UXO sector strategic plan (Safe Path Forward III) and accelerate the Lao government in accomplishing its 18th Sustainable Development Goal, Lives Safe from UXO,” said Ms. Catherine Phuong, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative. “Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) will continue to support the Lao Government for UXO removal for peace and prosperity in Laos for the achievement of the SDG 18 and the 9th NSEDP,” added. Ms. Hyereen Park, Deputy Representative KOICA Lao PDR Office. KOICA currently supports the new 13 humanitarian teams including the implementation of UXO risk education, survey, and clearance. Representatives from the Ministry of National Defense, NRA, KOICA, and UNDP attended the meeting.
Ms. Aksonethip Somvorachit
Communication Analyst, UNDP
+856 20 5502 1550
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