Destroyed 952,870 items of explosive devices and more than 5.4 million bullets, including 39,764 mines, 74,816 cluster munitions, and 952,870 other items of unexploded ordnance (UXO), to make safe: 1,578 water points, 293 schools, and 270 health clinics.
Confirmed safe 4,274 km of road, enabling UN and humanitarian partners to deliver life-saving aid, as well as supporting functioning markets and sustainable development.
Explosive Ordnance Risk Education (EORE) ensured that 5,420,295 people, including internally displaced persons (IDPs), returnees, and host communities, can recognize and report explosive hazards.
Since its inception in 2004, UNMAS has coordinated the clearance of 46.43 km2 of minefields and 73.59 km2 of cluster strikes and battlefields as well as the cancellation or reduction through survey of more than 1,165.93 km2 of suspected areas.
The total contamination area is now estimated to be around 18.3 km2 (approximately 2,614 football pitches) with 347 remaining tasks comprised of 182 minefields, 131 cluster munition strikes, and 34 confrontation areas. UNMAS believes that all these tasks can be cleared within five years – given safe access and appropriate funding. However, the requirement for a spot UXO clearance capacity will remain for decades. UNMAS is preparing for a transfer of full responsibility for the long-term management of mine action to the National Mine Action Authority.
The Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS) is holding, however, the majority of the remaining contamination is centred in the southern part of the Greater Equatoria region, which is currently the area of greatest insecurity. Much of the contamination straddles the primary return routes for the 880,000 refugees in Uganda and the 88,000 refugees in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Safe land is needed for resettlement and agriculture, and a prerequisite for safe return.
As of 1 March 2021, UNMAS coordinates 29 mine action teams with additional EORE teams. Each year the teams clear approximately 1.8 km2 of minefields and 4.2 km2 of cluster strikes and battlefields and deliver safety messaging to more than 300,000 people.
UNMAS is an integral component of UNMISS, mandated under Security Council Resolution 2567 (2021), and supports the four core objectives:
- Protection of civilians;
- Creating the conditions conductive to the delivery of humanitarian assistance;
- Supporting the implementation of the Revitalised Agreement and the peace process; and
- Monitoring and investigating human rights.
Survey and Clearance:
From 29 December 2020 to 11 January 2021, UNMAS conducted survey and clearance operations for a water pipeline that UNICEF is constructing in Juba, Central Equatoria. The area where the pipeline is being constructed has suffered from heavy conflict in the past and UNMAS has destroyed hundreds of items of explosive ordnance in the area. The total length of the pipeline is 26.65 km and will serve a population of 110,000 beneficiaries after being filtered from the Nile River. Mr. Martin Wani, the Chief of the village said, “The community feels safer because we saw UNMAS clear the land and now we will also have clean water! Thank you!.”
UNMAS has been conducting road clearance of the Torit to Lafon route in Eastern Equatoria since 2019. The clearance of this key supply route has facilitated safe road transportation of livelihood commodities and lifesaving supplies as well as the delivery of humanitarian assistance. It has specifically enabled the World Food Programme (WFP) to safely deliver much needed aid to Lafon and preposition supplies before the rainy season as the area is prone to heavy flooding and continues to remain highly food insecure.
Protection of Civilians:
In November 2020, UNMAS began conducting survey and clearance operations in Tingili, Central Equatoria near a recently established internally displaced person (IDP) camp; a total of 64 items of explosive ordnance including five AP mines, 17 AT mines, and 42 UXO were found and safely destroyed, and a total of 142,985m2 of land was released to support safe and voluntary resettlement. UNMAS also delivered EORE sessions to IDPs to enable them to recognize, mitigate and report explosive hazards.
Explosive Ordnance Risk Education (EORE):
In Magwi, Eastern Equatoria, UNMAS has delivered EORE to nearly 1,844 community members, including farmers, charcoal producers, hunters, women, and children, in the process of clearing land and infrastructures in 2021. EORE sessions have now been specifically tailored to mitigate against the threat of COVID-19 by using a door-to-door modality and UNMAS has incorporated preventative messaging in conjunction the with risks that explosive ordnance pose for civilians.
UNMAS South Sudan mainly receives funding from assessed contributions to the UN Peacekeeping operation through the Department of Peace Operations, in addition to funding from the Government of Japan through the Voluntary Trust Fund (VTF) for Mine Action.
Data updated: March 2021