UN delivers Explosive Ordnance Disposal equipment to support Libyan authorities in dealing with explosive hazards
Tuesday 24 April 2018 – Explosive remnants of war lead to devastating humanitarian consequences, causing injury, death and massive displacement of civilians across Libya. With limited resources, Libyan Security Institutions such as the National Safety Authority and Military Engineers carry out the critical and risky clearance work to reduce the impact of explosive remnants of war on civilians’ lives.
In a bid to enhance the Libyan capacity in ridding the country of explosive remnants of war, The United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS), thanks to a EUR 500,000 contribution from the Government of Austria, delivered 12 Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) kits to the Libyan Military Engineers and the National Safety Authority (NSA). This donation is part of a ‘capacity enhancement’ programme, supported by the Governments of Austria and the United Kingdom (UK) and coordinated by UNMAS.
The EOD equipment were handed over to 16 Libyan trained-EOD operators, four from the Libyan Military Engineers and 12 from the NSA - who had received a UK-funded training, back in November 2017, on Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) - during a ceremony that took place today at the UN headquarters in Libya’s Tripoli.
Addressing the ceremony, which was attended by representatives of the Libyan Military Engineers, the NSA and the UN, Ronald Sturm, Ambassador of Austria to Libya said, “The presence of explosive hazards may prevent internally displaced persons from returning to their homes, and humanitarian actors from helping people in need. In short, it hampers socio-economic progress, for this reason, Austria, as a friend a partner of Libya was happy to make this contribution.”
UNMAS Libya remains committed to strengthening the ability of Libyan National Security Institutions to remove the deadly items left behind by armed conflict and to ensure greater access to basic services and humanitarian assistance for people in need. In the longer-term, such activities will enable and facilitate stabilization and development initiatives for Libya.
Note to correspondents:
The 12 trained NSA were selected based upon their previous successful performance during a previous EOD course delivered by UNMAS in Jordan in 2015. With the new equipment in hands, they will deliver the appropriate Advanced EOD Technique training to the rest of their EOD teams in order to allow them to carry out EOD tasks across Libya. The 4 trained Military Engineers were selected among the most successful participants in the month long Special to Theater EOD training delivered by UNMAS Libya, in September-October 2017, in South Africa.