Federal Republic of Germany supports cluster munitions clearance in Lebanon
(Ig, 09 August 2013) H.E. Anna Prinz, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany in Slovenia and Mr Dorijan Maršič, ITF Director today signed a Grant Agreement on which basis the Federal Republic of Germany entrusted yet another donation to the ITF. The donation in the total amount of EUR 283,119.28 EUR has been earmarked for cluster clearance activities implemented by NGO DanChurchAid with two Multi task teams of app 240.000 square meters of contaminated land in South Lebanon. With this aid the Federal Republic of Germany will support people`s safety by preventing new mine/ERW victims in Lebanon, enhance quality of life and promote development.
Lebanon has been seriously scarred by decades of armed conflict. Most of the fighting has left behind a legacy of mines, cluster munitions and unexploded ordnance (UXO) scattered in old battlefields throughout the entire country with South Lebanon being the locus of the majority of the major fighting in 2006. Landmines and explosive remnants of war (ERW) have killed and maimed more than 3.674 persons (900 killed; 2.774 injured) and continue to cause an ongoing terrible indiscriminate threat to Lebanon civilians; hinder development of contaminated areas and deny access to agricultural land, the primary source of economy, cause economic loss and infrastructural damage and remain a constant reminder of the war. They seriously threaten the security of people, as well as their livelihoods in the area where agriculture represents one of the main economic activities and lead to death, injury and disability.
In June 2012, Lebanon Mine Action Center (LMAC) estimated that a total of 109,5 million square meters of contaminated/suspected land remains to be cleared in Lebanon. With the clearance of cluster bomb contaminated areas in South Lebanon ITF and the Federal Republic of Germany also support Lebanon in fulfilling its obligations under the Oslo Convention on Cluster Munitions.
The Federal Republic of Germany has donated funds to the ITF each year since its establishment in 1998 and thus remains one of the most important and regular donors to the ITF.