The United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) has received a contribution of USD 9.3 million to the United Nations Voluntary Trust Fund for Assistance in Mine Action (UN VTF) from the Government of Japan to undertake critical humanitarian mine action programming in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sudan and South Sudan. Japan is one of the largest donors to the UN VTF providing over USD 132 million since 2010. In addition to its financial support, UNMAS benefits from the provision of Japanese in-kind personnel.
“The United Nations thanks the Government and People of Japan for their continued commitment to mine action,” stated Agnès Marcaillou, the Director of UNMAS. “Enduring conflicts, as we see in the Middle East and Africa where Japan is focusing its funding, have resulted in an unprecedented level of contamination by unexploded bombs, rockets and other ammunition. With Japanese support, UNMAS will continue to clear land and open roads allowing refugees and displaced people to return home and enable humanitarian actors to reach populations in need. This work will save lives and provide hope and opportunity for some of the poorest communities in the world.”
His Excellency Dr. Toshiya Hoshino, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Permanent Mission of Japan to the United Nations, said, “Humanitarian action cannot be undertaken without mine action. Nor can displaced people return home, or civilians live in safety and escape poverty. Mine action is, therefore, a prerequisite for sustainable development as well as for human security. Based on this idea, Japan has been placing assistance to mine action as one of its diplomatic priorities, and this year’s assistance is also in line with this firm commitment. As one of the largest contributors to the United Nations Voluntary Trust Fund for Mine Action, Japan expects this assistance will be used in an effective and coordinated manner. Japan will continue to play an active role in mine action in collaboration with the United Nations, the Member States, and civil society organizations to achieve our collective goal of creating a mine-free world.”
In these turbulent times, the needs of the humanitarian mine action sector are increasing as highlighted earlier this month when the United Nations launched the Portfolio for Mine Action Projects for 2018. The Portfolio shows the funding requirements increased by 29 per cent compared to 2017, to USD 661 million. With 27 per cent of the total secured, USD 483 million more is needed for clearance of explosive hazards, risk education, and support to victims and their communities.
For further information please contact:
Kurt Chesko, Donor Relations Officer, UNMAS Email: chesko[at]un.org