Afghanistan + 8 more

New grants to deal with explosives remnants of war and landmines

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The United States has launched another effort to strengthen peace and post-conflict recovery. The Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement in the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Political-Military Affairs has awarded a total of more than $2.2 million to twenty-three non-governmental organizations to clean up former battle areas - most of which are littered by landmines and explosive remnants of war left by other countries - teach mine risk education, assist mine survivors, and conduct related research. The U.S. is the global leader in efforts to save lives by confronting the dangers posed by persistent landmines and all explosive remnants of war, including unexploded cluster munitions.

These grants, described below, augment the Department's projected FY 2007 budget of over $65.3 million for humanitarian mine action and small arms/light weapons abatement.

- - $199,914 to Norwegian Peoples Aid (http://www.npaid.org/www.English/World/Land_mines/) to develop the South Sudan Demining Commission's capacity to survey landmine and explosive remnants of war infestation there; and to improve the Cambodian Mine Action and Victims Assistance Authority's national capacity by developing the collection, management and dissemination of information on mine action in that country.

- - $199,897 to the Demining Agency for Afghanistan (http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/pix/b/22066.htm ) to provide vocational training to 120 former humanitarian deminers in Afghanistan.

- - $187,084 to the International Eurasia Press Fund to support the Tartar Azerbaijan Mine Victims Association and establish regional branches in Azerbaijan's Aghstafa and Fizuly regions.

- - $136,245 to MAG America (http://www.magamerica.org) to destroy a hazardous stockpile of unexploded ordnance (UXO) at a metal recycling facility in Laos, and educate Lao scrap metal dealers about UXO hazards; and to conduct an assessment mission in Senegal building on existing data about the explosive hazards and small arms/light weapons problems there, determine the type of intervention required, and establish the feasibility of implementing related abatement projects.

- - $128,075 to Afghanistan Technical Consultants (http://www.mineaction.org/org.asp?o=84) to provide low-cost community-based landmine clearance in Afghanistan, thereby assisting the livelihood of poor villagers and increasing their food security.

- - $115,203 to the The Humpty Dumpty Institute (http://www.thehdi.org) to expand a landmine survivors assistance mushroom growing project in Quang Tri province, Vietnam; and to increase its own capacity to initiate new proposals linking U.S. food aid, mine action, and subsequent agricultural and economic development.

- - $109,907 to The Marshall Legacy Institute (http://www.marshall-legacy.org) to support a series of fund-raising athletic runs by Slovenia's Ambassador to the United States to benefit the International Trust Fund for Demining and Mine Victims Assistance; to support the Children Against Mines Program (CHAMPS) efforts to rehabilitate three young Bosnian landmine survivors; and to provide six mine detecting dogs to a country that receives assistance from the U.S. Humanitarian Mine Action Program.

- - $100,000 to the Mine Clearance Planning Agency (http://www.mineaction.org/org.asp?o=63) to continue the clearance of landmines and explosive remnants of war in Afghanistan.

- - $100,000 to Shamshad TV (http://www.shamshadtv.com/) to create and broadcast mine risk education public service messages and dramas in Pashto and Dari to alert the populations of Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran about the dangers of landmines and explosive remnants of war.

- - $100,000 to the Centro Integral de Rehabilitaticion de Colombia (http://www.cirec.org) to assist survivors of landmines and explosive devices in the department of Santander, Colombia.

- - $100,000 to Viet-Nam Assistance for the Handicapped (http://vnah-hev.org/index.php) to create a pilot program to teach mine risk education in Nghe An province, Vietnam.

- - $99,652 to DanChurchAid (http://www.dca.dk) to foster public support in Burundi for community disarmament of small arms/light weapons via the national Council of Churches of Burundi, and to produce publicity in support of the Government of Burundi's disarmament program.

- - $99,500 to Cleared Ground Demining (http://www.clearedground.org/) to provide a roving Explosive Ordnance Disposal capability to reduce the impact of explosive remnants of war in Guinea-Bissau, to be supported by matching funds from other donors.

- - $99,250 to the Iraq Health and Social Care Organization to develop the capacity of the Iraqi government and local non-governmental organizations to conduct mine risk education there. ("Mine risk education" includes teaching about the dangers of unexploded ordnance, including any unexploded cluster munitions, and abandoned ordnance as well as the risks of entering mined areas or tampering with landmines.)

- - $95,250 to the Survey Action Center (http://www.sac-na.org) to develop and validate a predictive tool for identifying communities and suspected hazard areas in Afghanistan that have the highest probability of creating new victims, thereby contributing to the efficient distribution of scarce mine action resources in order to reduce the threats to those communities and lowering victim levels.

- - $85,638 to Cranfield University (http://www.cranfield.ac.uk) to develop quality and performance management guidelines for mine action in Afghanistan and Laos.

- - $75,000 to the Polus Center for Social & Economic Development (http://www.poluscenter.org) for a matching grant to support the CoffeeLands Landmine Survivors Trust Awareness project to promote coffee companies' investing in landmine survivors assistance; and a related mine survivors assistance project.

- - $61,722 to Catholic University to further the development of an autonomous landmine detection system based on a hovercraft platform.

- - $55,000 to Freedom Fields USA (http://www.freedomfieldsusa.org) for landmine clearance in Battambang province, Cambodia, to be matched by private funds.

- - $50,000 to the The HALO Trust (http://www.halotrust.org) to clear landmines in the K5 mine belt in Northwest Cambodia, to be matched by private funds.

- - $30,000 to Counterpart International (http://www.counterpart.org ) for its "Safe Farms, Safe Schools" project to reduce explosive remnants of war contamination in Quang Binh province, Vietnam, build 10 safe playgrounds in impacted areas, and teach mine risk education.

- - $20,000 to Clear Path International (http://www.cpi.org) to support the "AbilityTrek" bicycle tour across the United States by amputee endurance cycler Dan Sheret (http://www.abilitytrek.org) to raise at least $60,000 in new funds for war victims in Cambodia and Iraq.

- - $11,657 to the Mine Action Information Center (http://maic.jmu.edu) at James Madison University to create a catalog of global training and education opportunities for organizations that deal with small arms/light weapons, landmine, and explosive remnants of war reduction.

Visit http://www.state.gov/t/pm/wra to learn more about the Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement's humanitarian mine action and small arms/light weapons abatement programs.