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Japan provides almost $2M to aid mine clearance efforts

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CMAC and Jica on Tuesday signed a technical cooperation agreement to implement mine clearance action for the next four years. THE MINISTRY OF INFORMATION

Japan provides almost $2M to aid mine clearance efforts

The Cambodian Mine Action Centre (CMAC) and Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica) on Tuesday signed the Record of Discussion on Technical Cooperation for the Project for Strengthening Organisational Functions of CMAC to implement mine clearance action for the next four years.

The project will receive more than $1.79 million from the Japanese government.

The signing ceremony was attended by senior minister in charge of Special Operations Meas Sophea, CMAC director-general Khoem Sophoan and Japanese Ambassador Masahiro Mikami in Phnom Penh.

CMAC director-general Heng Ratana said the project aimed to support the integration of landmine clearance and victim assistance, adding that the grant had been provided “to the government through the Ministry of Economy and Finance”.

Chhun Bora, the training manager at Cambodian Self Help Demining (CSHD), said his organisation had received support from the US, South Korea, Australia and Switzerland for a year-long mine clearance project.

The biggest challenge in mine clearance, he said, was seeking financial help to support the work and achieve the organisation’s planned goals.

“If we lack funding, we will have difficulties achieving the 2025 demining goal. But if we have money, we may achieve it before the set date. So I wish to appeal to donors to continue providing financial support to the mine clearance sector,” said Bora.

Jica chief representative Yuichi Sugano could not be reached for comment on Tuesday.

A CMAC report said that from March 1992 until October this year, more than 1,064 sqkm of mine-contaminated land had been cleared, three million types of mines and unexploded ordnances had been removed and 68 sites with chemical bombs had been found.

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