HALO was established in 1988 in response to the devastating human toll of landmines in Afghanistan following the Soviet withdrawal. Over the last thirty-five years, we have cleared landmines from 29 countries and territories, including Angola where Princess Diana was filmed in a minefield in 1997. The Princess championed the banning of landmines, and the Ottawa Treaty was signed later that year. Today we mark a major milestone—2 million mines cleared for good.
Dr. Farid, HALO Afghanistan Country Director
“I would like to pay tribute to the tens of thousands of HALO staff who have put other people’s lives first to rid countries of this deadly scourge.”
HALO employs over 11,500 staff around the world - many of them clearing their own communities of the deadly legacy of conflict. We estimate that their dedication has saved the lives of 2 million people and enabled over 10 million people to have safer access to schools, health clinics and farming land—ensuring children can reach class without walking through a minefield and parents can put food on the table.
Survey & EOD Commander, HALO Cambodia
This 2 million milestone brings the levels of mine contamination in Ukraine into sharp focus. Ukraine is suffering from the heaviest landmine and unexploded ordnance (UXO) contamination in Europe since World War II. Estimates suggest there could be over two million landmines in the country, putting approximately 6.1 million people at risk and significantly restricting access to agricultural land which, in turn, limits grain production.
James Cowan, CEO, The HALO Trust
Over the past 12 months, HALO has expanded rapidly in Ukraine, where it uses technologies, equipment, and devices it has trialed in various locations, including drones, ground-penetrating radar, and remote-controlled machinery. In Ukraine, and across the world our staff will continue our mission to support protect the lives and restore the livelihoods of those affected by conflict.
Thank you to all our donors, who have enabled us to reach this milestone and continue to support our life-saving work.