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Mine, UXO casualties dip

Mine, UXO casualties dip

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Unexploded ordnance is displayed on a table during a conference on demining in Phnom Penh earlier this month. Photograph: Vireak Mai/Phnom Penh Post

The total number of victims of mines and unexploded ordnance in the first half of the year decreased by nine compared with the same period in 2011, a new report from the Cambodia Mine Victims Information System shows.

According to CMVIS’s July 2012 report, that there have been 104 cases of death or injury caused by mines and UXO in the year’s first six months, with 22 dead and 83 injured.

“In the same period in 2011, there were 113 victims, so comparing the first six months of 2011 and 2012, the number of victims decreased by about 8 per cent,” CMVIS project manager Chhiv Lim said yesterday.

He added that in all of 2011, 211 people were injured by mines and UXO, with 43 killed and 169 wounded.

Provinces with the highest numbers of victims included Battambang, Preah Vihear, Oddar Meanchey, Banteay Meanchey and Pailin.

Heng Ratana, general director of the Cambodian Mine Action Centre, said that there is no specific explanation for the decrease in casualties.

Deaths and injuries caused by mines and UXO depend largely on the specific decisions of individuals living in provinces where mines and UXO are common.

“However, the decrease does demonstrate the government’s effort to clear mines in Cambodia,” Ratana said.

Most injuries and deaths from mines and UXO occurred while the victims were farming or travelling, according to the CMVIS report.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kim Yuthana at [email protected]

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