Landmines continue to hurt children’s bodies, minds, and hearts

Landmines continue to hurt children’s bodies, minds, and hearts.

Still, 60 countries and other areas are contaminated by antipersonnel mines.

Recently released Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor stressed the high numbers of civilian landmine casualties in Ukraine, Myanmar, Syria, and Yemen.

Civilians accounted for 85% of landmine and ERW casualties recorded in 2022, half of them children (1,171).

According to the Monitor report, 4,710 people were injured or killed by landmines and explosive remnants of war across 49 states and two other areas in 2022.

Currently, 164 countries have signed onto the mine ban treaty, which bars the use, storage, production, and transport of anti-personnel mines. The report said 30 states that are part of the treaty have cleared all mined areas from their territory since the treaty came into force.

Russia has used antipersonnel landmines repeatedly in Ukraine since its full-scale invasion of the country on February 24, 2022, creating an unprecedented situation in which a country that is not party to the Mine Ban Treaty is using the weapon on the territory of a treaty party

“All countries that have not banned antipersonnel mines should help put an end to the casualties and suffering caused by these indiscriminate weapons,” said Mark Hiznay, associate arms director at Human Rights Watch and an editor of Landmine Monitor 2023. “Only through universal adherence can the Mine Ban Treaty achieve its goal of a world without antipersonnel mines.”

The Mine Ban Treaty, adopted in September 1997, comprehensively prohibits antipersonnel mines and requires countries to destroy stockpiles, clear mine-affected areas, and assist victims.

In the picture in Cambodia with Tun Channareth from the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, who taught me a lot about landmines.
Mr. Channareth, whose legs were severed by a landmine in 1982, traveled to Oslo in 1997 to receive the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the ICBL for its advocacy against landmines.