Koica planning to lend support in mine clearing

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Ly Thuch (fifth from left) on Thursday said the government welcomed Koica’s humanitarian aid and development efforts. KOICA

The Korea International Cooperation Agency (Koica) said on Wednesday it has embarked on a feasibility study – Project of Mine Action for Human Development Programme in Cambodia – to advance community development in villages that have been deemed mine-free.

“Upon the key findings, the Koica Cambodia office will report to its headquarters to select the priority projects for implementation in 2021.

“If this project passes selection, it will be implemented in Cambodia for 60 months from 2021 until 2025 with a total budget of $10 million,” Koica said.

On Thursday, Ly Thuch, the senior minister in charge of Special Missions and secretary-general of CMAA, said the government welcomed Koica’s humanitarian aid and development efforts.

Cambodia needs more funds to carry out mine and ordnance clearance activities across the country, Thuch said.

“We will implement the work of mine clearance in three provinces along the border – Battambang, Pailin and Banteay Meanchey. [The three provinces] are considered to be having the most mines in Cambodia.

“I hope that the Koica’s funds will help a large number of Cambodian people in these priority provinces,” he said.

He said for over 20 years, the authority had successfully removed mines from 1,900sq km. At present, the mine authority still needed more funds to carry out anti-person or anti-tank mine clearance plans until its target completion in 2025.

This year, more than 60 victims have been killed, injured, or disabled because of mines and ordnance explosion.