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Landmines in Sudan killed and injured 1,560 people: official

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January 21, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The National Council for Combating Landmines (NCCL) in Sudan revealed that landmines present in ten states left more than 560 people dead and more than a 1,000 disabled.

The minister of state at the Ministry of Defense Major General Yahiya Mohamed Khair at the NCCL ceremony in Khartoum called for focusing on education and counseling among military personnel on the economic and social risks caused by the landmines.

Khair underscored his ministry’s quest to resolve issues related the NCCL institutional structure.

The Sudanese army said in a report last week that landmines and explosive remnants of war represents a real obstacle to the achievement of economic development and creating the environment for the reconstruction and the voluntary return to these affected areas.

It noted that there are 545 mine victims in the three eastern Sudan states which it attributed to the conflicts in that region since 1941 by national and international actors.

The NCCL warned that the list of dangerous spots in the country could soon include the restive South Kordofan state.

Landmines pose serious threat because they aren’t directed towards certain targets and don’t differentiate between enemies and innocent civilians including children, women, elders, youths, and herders.

It also destroys livestock, wildlife, and development projects as well as polluting the environment.

(ST)

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