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Landmine clearance operations as UN mark Intl Mine Action Day

   AP Archive
   Published: 4 years ago


1. Various shots of a mine clearance team at the Kabul Airport
2. Mines on display
3. Mid shot of ammunition
4. Various shots mines
5. Set up shot of UN Mine clearer, Mir Mohammad Shakir walking towards the camera
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Mir Mohammad Shakir, UN Mine clearer
"The mine is the enemy of all these people we want to solve these problems from all Afghanistan; during 2012 Afghanistan will be free from mines."
7. Various shots UN mine clearance bulldozer
8. Various of a training centre for people who lost limbs because of mines
9. Mir Hussein, who lost a leg because of a mine, sitting on a bench
10. SOUNDBITE (Dari) Mir Hussein:
"We do not want mines any more because they kill people, They are our enemy and those who make the mines are our enemy too."
11. Various of a prosthetics production centre
12. Mid shot prosthetics
13. Various of mines about to undergo a controlled explosion
14. Various of controlled explosion
The United Nations has some hopeful news to report the first International Day for Mine Awareness on Tuesday.
They say it will take perhaps a decade, not hundreds of years, to get rid of (m) millions of landmines in 82 countries.
Afghanistan is one of the countries where hundreds of mines are hidden in the ground, and United Nations teams are working to remove them.
Teams of UN mine clearers are digging around Kabul airport to detonate landmines safely.
One member of the UN team, Mir Mohammad Shakir says he hopes the country will be free of them by 2012.
"The mine is the enemy of all these people we want to solve these problems from all Afghanistan" he said.
Many people have lost limbs after standing on landmines.
Mir Hussein, who lost his leg said the people of Afghanistan do not want landmines because they kill people.
"They are our enemy and those who make the mines is our enemy as well," he said.
At one stage experts at the UN said they thought it would take hundreds of years to solve mine problems in Afghanistan and elsewhere in the world but that now it could be a case of decades.
Within five years, mine experts said, the mine problem would likely be solved in Jordan, Senegal, Mauritania and Albania.
International Landmine Day was set up by the General Assembly to raise awareness and move toward the eradication of land mines.
Events are planned Tuesday around the world.
The United Nations says deadly anti-personnel mines continue to prevent millions of farmers from growing crops, children from playing outside, and displaced people from returning to their homes.
Although deaths from landmines have dropped, they are still killing and maiming between 15 thousand and 20 thousand people annually.

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