United Nations in Libya Marks the “International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action” in Partnership with Canada and the United Kingdom
The United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) co-organized a reception on 28 March in partnership with the Canadian and British Embassies to Libya to celebrate the “International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action”. Under the theme, “United Nations Promotes SDGs- Safe Ground- Safe Home”, the event was hosted at the Canadian Embassy in Tunis and gathered more than 90 Libyan and international mine action partners, including the Libyan Mine Action Centre (LibMAC), members of the diplomatic community, UN agencies, and civil society organizations.
Members of Libyan civil society organizations and international non-governmental organizations shared examples of programme activities and achievements that demonstrate how mine action is critical in enabling stability, economic recovery and development, reducing violence and sustaining peace, and is essential in accelerating progress towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Interventions by Libyan stakeholders and beneficiaries also highlighted the increased voice and influence of women; and awareness that women gained through working in mine action, which has had a positive impact on their communities. Mine Action opens pathways for members of local communities to take a central role in assisting their communities in building a better future.
In Tripoli, the LibMAC, hosted a reception on 4 April with the support and participation of UNMAS. More than 110 guests from Libyan ministries and authorities, implementing partners, and representatives from the diplomatic community attended. The participants shared information on operational activities, achievements, and lessons learned.
For years after a conflict has ended, mines, explosive hazards, including improvised explosive devices, continue to cause harm, instill fear and stop internally displaced people and refugees from returning to their homes, while survivors are often condemned to a life of poverty because of their injuries and the lack of rehabilitation services. Assistance in Mine Action, in various areas ranging from mine clearance, risk education, victims' assistance, and stockpile destruction, is a tangible form of protection for vulnerable individuals and conflict-affected communities. UNMAS reaffirms its strong commitment to support Libyan authorities, communities, and mine action partners in addressing the threats of explosive hazards.
“The path towards achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development must be clear of landmines, explosive remnants of war and improvised explosive devices. All people have the right to live in security, and not fear their next step. Mine action clears paths and creates safe ground on which homes can be built or rebuilt. Mine action changes mindsets so that people know how to protect themselves. It gives people and communities new horizons and hope.” (Antonio Guterrez, UN Secretary-General).