Japan funds HALO’s civilian humanitarian mine clearance in Colombia

On 25 March HALO signed a contract worth $740,000 with the Japanese Ambassador, HE Kazuo Watanabe, in a ceremony that was overseen by the Vice President of Colombia, Angelino Garzón.

This funding will allow HALO to recruit, equip and train 4 mine clearance teams. These men and women will be recruited from the landmine impacted communities that will benefit from HALO’s clearance funded by the Government of Japan.

This funding comes at an important time in Colombia’s history. Peace talks aimed at securing a lasting ceasefire are ongoing, victims of the conflict are being recognised and compensated and IDPs are preparing to return to their land.

The thread that binds all these factors together is the requirement for humanitarian mine clearance. Demobilised combatants will require jobs, land handed over to victims of the conflict needs to be free of landmines and, similarly, the return of IDPs and associated rehabilitation projects also require safe land.

HALO is very grateful to the Government of Japan’s funding through the Grass Roots Programme which also currently allows HALO’s lifesaving work to take place in Afghanistan, Georgia, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe.