Action on cluster munitions in Kosovo

At the Dubrovnik First Review Conference of the Convention on Cluster Munitions today, the Swiss FDFA, The HALO Trust, and Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) held an event to draw international attention to the neglected problem of cluster munition contamination in Kosovo.

A joint survey in 2013 by the Kosovo Mine Action Centre (KMAC) and HALO, identified 51 cluster munition strikes and 79 minefields. An independent evaluation in 2014 found that at current capacity it will take 12 years to clear this problem

During 2014-15 NPA conducted cluster munition survey in four municipalities of northern Kosovo in cooperation with KMAC. This survey confirmed 23 new cluster munition strikes and identified an additional 7 potential cluster munition strikes in need of technical survey and clearance.

Kosovo’s cluster munition contamination is a consequence of 78 days of bombing by NATO in 1999. NATO aircraft bombed 333 locations dropping 1,392 bombs that released 295,700 submunitions. The failure rate of the submunitions was typically between 10-15% and this resulted in tens of thousands of sensitive unexploded submunitions lying on and under the ground in strike areas. A large clearance programme followed under a UN mandate but this ended in 2001, leaving Kosovo with many minefields and cluster munition strikes needing to be cleared.

HALO returned to Kosovo in 2004 and since then has cleared 47 strikes, destroying over 1,400 submunitions.

Speaking at the Kosovo event François Garraux of the Swiss FDFA, a longstanding supporter of mine action in Kosovo, said that for successful national clearance programmes “it is important for donor countries like Switzerland to provide international cooperation and assistance, including sufficient and predictable funding.”

Darvin Lisica, Regional Director NPA South East Europe said:

NPA plans to develop a land release strategy for areas contaminated with cluster munition remnants in northern Kosovo. Working with KMAC and other organisations we would like to create a safe environment, free of mines, cluster munition and other explosive remnants of war for all affected communities in Kosovo.

Speaking on behalf of The HALO Trust, Andrew Moore, Regional Director said:

Kosovo’s unrecognised status means that it cannot join the Convention or the Mine Ban Treaty. It does not possess cluster munitions and mines and it does fund its own clearance capacity, the Kosovo Security Force, but it still needs help. If the people of Kosovo have to wait another 12 years, they will have lived with the fear of cluster munitions and mines for 27 years. If ever there was a deserving case for a country to receive international assistance to clear its mines and cluster munitions in a timely manner, it is Kosovo.

The Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) is an international treaty that addresses the humanitarian consequences to civilians caused by cluster munitions, through an agreement by states parties not to manufacture, purchase or use cluster munitions and a framework to clear existing strikes.

The HALO Trust and partners join forces in call to action on cluster munitions in Kosovo

At the Dubrovnik First Review Conference of the Convention on Cluster Munitions today, the Swiss FDFA, The HALO Trust, and Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) held an event to draw international attention to the neglected problem of cluster munition contamination in Kosovo. 

A joint survey in 2013 by the Kosovo Mine Action Centre (KMAC) and HALO, identified 51 cluster munition strikes and 79 minefields. An independent evaluation in 2014 found that at current capacity it will take 12 years to clear this problem

During 2014-15 NPA conducted cluster munition survey in four municipalities of northern Kosovo in cooperation with KMAC. This survey confirmed 23 new cluster munition strikes and identified an additional 7 potential cluster munition strikes in need of technical survey and clearance. 

A legacy of bombing in 1999

Kosovo’s cluster munition contamination is a consequence of 78 days of bombing by NATO in 1999. NATO aircraft bombed 333 locations dropping 1,392 bombs that released 295,700 submunitions. The failure rate of the submunitions was typically between 10-15% and this resulted in tens of thousands of sensitive unexploded submunitions lying on and under the ground in strike areas. A large clearance programme followed under a UN mandate but this ended in 2001, leaving Kosovo with many minefields and cluster munition strikes needing to be cleared. 

HALO returned to Kosovo in 2004 and since then has cleared 47 strikes, destroying over 1,400 submunitions. 

Speaking at the Kosovo event François Garraux of the Swiss FDFA, a longstanding supporter of mine action in Kosovo, said that for successful national clearance programmes “it is important for donor countries like Switzerland to provide international cooperation and assistance, including sufficient and predictable funding.”

Darvin Lisica, Regional Director NPA South East Europe said: 

“NPA plans to develop a land release strategy for areas contaminated with cluster munition remnants in northern Kosovo. Working with KMAC and other organisations we would like to create a safe environment, free of mines, cluster munition and other explosive remnants of war for all affected communities in Kosovo.”

Speaking on behalf of The HALO Trust, Andrew Moore, Regional Director said: 

“Kosovo’s unrecognised status means that it cannot join the Convention or the Mine Ban Treaty. It does not possess cluster munitions and mines and it does fund its own clearance capacity, the Kosovo Security Force, but it still needs help. If the people of Kosovo have to wait another 12 years, they will have lived with the fear of cluster munitions and mines for 27 years. If ever there was a deserving case for a country to receive international assistance to clear its mines and cluster munitions in a timely manner, it is Kosovo. "

 The Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) is an international treaty that addresses the humanitarian consequences to civilians caused by cluster munitions, through an agreement by states parties not to manufacture, purchase or use cluster munitions and a framework to clear existing strikes. 

-Seemoreat: http://www.halotrust.org/media-centre/news-press-releases/action-cluster-munitions-kosovo#sthash.hT19dOru.dpuf

The HALO Trust and partners join forces in call to action on cluster munitions in Kosovo

At the Dubrovnik First Review Conference of the Convention on Cluster Munitions today, the Swiss FDFA, The HALO Trust, and Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) held an event to draw international attention to the neglected problem of cluster munition contamination in Kosovo. 

A joint survey in 2013 by the Kosovo Mine Action Centre (KMAC) and HALO, identified 51 cluster munition strikes and 79 minefields. An independent evaluation in 2014 found that at current capacity it will take 12 years to clear this problem

During 2014-15 NPA conducted cluster munition survey in four municipalities of northern Kosovo in cooperation with KMAC. This survey confirmed 23 new cluster munition strikes and identified an additional 7 potential cluster munition strikes in need of technical survey and clearance. 

A legacy of bombing in 1999

Kosovo’s cluster munition contamination is a consequence of 78 days of bombing by NATO in 1999. NATO aircraft bombed 333 locations dropping 1,392 bombs that released 295,700 submunitions. The failure rate of the submunitions was typically between 10-15% and this resulted in tens of thousands of sensitive unexploded submunitions lying on and under the ground in strike areas. A large clearance programme followed under a UN mandate but this ended in 2001, leaving Kosovo with many minefields and cluster munition strikes needing to be cleared. 

HALO returned to Kosovo in 2004 and since then has cleared 47 strikes, destroying over 1,400 submunitions. 

Speaking at the Kosovo event François Garraux of the Swiss FDFA, a longstanding supporter of mine action in Kosovo, said that for successful national clearance programmes “it is important for donor countries like Switzerland to provide international cooperation and assistance, including sufficient and predictable funding.”

Darvin Lisica, Regional Director NPA South East Europe said: 

“NPA plans to develop a land release strategy for areas contaminated with cluster munition remnants in northern Kosovo. Working with KMAC and other organisations we would like to create a safe environment, free of mines, cluster munition and other explosive remnants of war for all affected communities in Kosovo.”

Speaking on behalf of The HALO Trust, Andrew Moore, Regional Director said: 

“Kosovo’s unrecognised status means that it cannot join the Convention or the Mine Ban Treaty. It does not possess cluster munitions and mines and it does fund its own clearance capacity, the Kosovo Security Force, but it still needs help. If the people of Kosovo have to wait another 12 years, they will have lived with the fear of cluster munitions and mines for 27 years. If ever there was a deserving case for a country to receive international assistance to clear its mines and cluster munitions in a timely manner, it is Kosovo. "

 The Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) is an international treaty that addresses the humanitarian consequences to civilians caused by cluster munitions, through an agreement by states parties not to manufacture, purchase or use cluster munitions and a framework to clear existing strikes. 

- See more at: http://www.halotrust.org/media-centre/news-press-releases/action-cluster-munitions-kosovo#sthash.hT19dOru.dpufThe HALO Trust and partners join forces in call to action on cluster munitions in Kosovo

At the Dubrovnik First Review Conference of the Convention on Cluster Munitions today, the Swiss FDFA, The HALO Trust, and Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) held an event to draw international attention to the neglected problem of cluster munition contamination in Kosovo.

A joint survey in 2013 by the Kosovo Mine Action Centre (KMAC) and HALO, identified 51 cluster munition strikes and 79 minefields. An independent evaluation in 2014 found that at current capacity it will take 12 years to clear this problem

During 2014-15 NPA conducted cluster munition survey in four municipalities of northern Kosovo in cooperation with KMAC. This survey confirmed 23 new cluster munition strikes and identified an additional 7 potential cluster munition strikes in need of technical survey and clearance.

A legacy of bombing in 1999

Kosovo’s cluster munition contamination is a consequence of 78 days of bombing by NATO in 1999. NATO aircraft bombed 333 locations dropping 1,392 bombs that released 295,700 submunitions. The failure rate of the submunitions was typically between 10-15% and this resulted in tens of thousands of sensitive unexploded submunitions lying on and under the ground in strike areas. A large clearance programme followed under a UN mandate but this ended in 2001, leaving Kosovo with many minefields and cluster munition strikes needing to be cleared.

HALO returned to Kosovo in 2004 and since then has cleared 47 strikes, destroying over 1,400 submunitions.

Speaking at the Kosovo event François Garraux of the Swiss FDFA, a longstanding supporter of mine action in Kosovo, said that for successful national clearance programmes “it is important for donor countries like Switzerland to provide international cooperation and assistance, including sufficient and predictable funding.”

Darvin Lisica, Regional Director NPA South East Europe said:

“NPA plans to develop a land release strategy for areas contaminated with cluster munition remnants in northern Kosovo. Working with KMAC and other organisations we would like to create a safe environment, free of mines, cluster munition and other explosive remnants of war for all affected communities in Kosovo.”

Speaking on behalf of The HALO Trust, Andrew Moore, Regional Director said:

“Kosovo’s unrecognised status means that it cannot join the Convention or the Mine Ban Treaty. It does not possess cluster munitions and mines and it does fund its own clearance capacity, the Kosovo Security Force, but it still needs help. If the people of Kosovo have to wait another 12 years, they will have lived with the fear of cluster munitions and mines for 27 years. If ever there was a deserving case for a country to receive international assistance to clear its mines and cluster munitions in a timely manner, it is Kosovo. "

 The Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) is an international treaty that addresses the humanitarian consequences to civilians caused by cluster munitions, through an agreement by states parties not to manufacture, purchase or use cluster munitions and a framework to clear existing strikes.

More info on Kosovo

Find out more about our humanitarian mine clearance in Kosovo by visiting the Kosovo page

Kosovo

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