Kinshasa, 2 December 2022 - Due to ongoing conflicts in Eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), contamination with Explosive Remnants of War (ERW) is increasing, along with a surge in refugees and Internally Displaced Population (IDP) growth, who are vulnerable to the threats and risks posed by ERW and the misuse of Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW).
While the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (GoDRC) was supposed to be compliant with the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention (APMBC) article 5 by January 2021 to survey and clear all known or suspected mined areas, it requested an extension until 31 December 2025.
To support the GoDRC to be compliant towards the APMBC Article 5 and achieve a mine free world, the Korean Agency for International Cooperation (KOICA) provided a generous support of USD 6 million to the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS), for a demining project lasting 24 months from 1 December 2022 to 30 November 2024.
This funding will enable UNMAS to support the GoDRC and in its path towards “finishing the job” and its efforts of protecting the civilian population especially the IDPs in the East of the DRC, which has registered increased number of explosive incidents, victims, and minefields, through the project "Sustainable Mine Action in Support of Conflict Affected Refugees, Internally Displaced People and Communities in the DRC".
As the DRC progresses towards a mine-free environment, UNMAS has an increased focus on enhancing capacity of national actors by sharing and transferring its lessons learned from traditional methods and innovative approaches in explosive hazard management, Explosive Ordnance Risk Education (EORE) and Non-Technical Survey (NTS).
This contribution from KOICA will enable UNMAS to continue enhancing national capacity to create national Explosive Risk Education (EORE), Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) and clearance response and self-sustainable national organizations in the provinces of Ituri, North Kivu and South Kivu.
Through this project, KOICA contributes to effectively implement the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 16 and 17 by strengthening the National Mine Action Authority (CCLAM) capacity to coordinate Mine Action activities and thereby encouraging the return of IDPs, creating freedom of movement in a post-conflict society, reducing fear and threat of the ‘frozen violence’ of landmines and other ERW.
The project cooperation agreement was signed on 22 November 2022 in Kinshasa. The signature ceremony was also attended by the Ambassador of Korea in the DRC, the MONUSCO Police Commissioner and the head of office of the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) for Protection and Operations of MONUSCO.
For further information, please contact:
Jean-Denis Larsen, UNMAS Chief Mine Action Programme, DRC, firstname.lastname@example.org