The Land Mine Threat
- Sub Munitions / Cluster Munitions kill more deminers than any other item of Explosive Remnants of War (ERW)
- Every month around 2000 people are injured, maimed or killed. Many of these are innocent children who mistake the mines or ERW for playthings.
- ERW and land mines do not discriminate civilians from soldiers. Anti-personnel land mines are designed not to kill but to injure and maim. This puts a tremendous burden on others to care for the injured, often within societies that are ill prepared for this task.
- There are up to 350 different types of mines.
- The cost of manufacturing a mine ranges from USD3 to USD30, whilst the cost to remove a mine is in the vicinity of USD1, 000.
The Ottawa Treaty
Ottawa Treaty In 1997 an enlightened consortium of NGOs pushed for the worldwide banning of the production and use of land mines. Currently some 144 countries are party to the treaty with another 9 awaiting ratification . A 5-year review of progress towards the goals of the treaty took place in November 2004 at the Nairobi Summit. The Ottawa Treaty does not unfortunately cover the issues of anti-tank mines or cluster bombs.
International Mine Action Standards (IMAS)
Cleared Ground strictly adheres to IMAS and other internationally recognised best practice in all aspects of its activities. It has also developed its own robust SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures), and all activities undertaken are founded in these principles of safety.
Land Mine Clearance Toolkits
A variety of clearance methods are normally used in any demining initiative in order to deal with the different phases of the land mine clearance process, and to accommodate variations in minefield environments. There are pros and cons to any method, for example whilst manual demining can be viewed as more cost effective and thorough, it can also be much more time consuming than mechanical demining machines which can also be utilized for other activities such as vegetation clearance. Much research and development is currently being undertaken around the world, from the development of teams of demining rats to highly sophisticated laser devices.