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  • Humanitarian workers watching the risk education electronic device used by UNMAS in Nigeria. Photo UNMAS

UNMAS Welcomes the Contribution of the Government of Japan

UNMAS Welcomes the Contribution of the Government of Japan to Humanitarian Mine Action in Nigeria

Nigeria, 14 February 2024 - The United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) welcomes the contribution of $650,000 from the People and Government of Japan for the provision of life-saving explosive ordnance risk education (EORE) for internally displaced persons (IDPs), returnees, and refugees in northeast Nigeria. The project is aimed at mitigating the threat posed by improvised explosive devices (IEDs), mines and other explosive ordnance in Nigeria.

The Chief of the Mine Action Programme in Nigeria, Edwin Faigmane, stated: “Funding from Japan comes at a crucial time with the closure and/or decongestion of IDP camps in the northeast. EORE is vital to ensure that displaced persons are aware of the dangers posed by explosive ordnance when they return to their communities and begin to rebuild their lives and livelihoods. The communities they are returning to are usually the scenes of conflict and may be impacted by the presence of explosive ordnance.”

Impact on Nigeria

Explosive ordnance, including IEDs and mines of an improvised nature, continue to pose serious threats to the lives of conflict-affected people in northeast Nigeria. In 2023 alone, UNMAS recorded 352 casualties from 361 explosive ordnance incidents. This alarming statistic indicates that almost one person is injured or killed by explosive ordnance every day. UNMAS has also recorded a 69 per cent increase in the number of children casualties when comparing figures from 2023 to 2022.

Explosive ordnance not only endangers the safety of people but also disrupts development by restricting access to land and resources and hinders socio-economic activities. Farming and other agricultural activities are perceived as the riskiest activities when it comes to explosive ordnance.

Focusing on northeast Nigeria

UNMAS will undertake explosive ordnance risk education activities in priority areas, as indicated by local governmental authorities and identified under the 2024 Humanitarian Response Plan. These areas were selected for their accessibility, number of explosive ordnance incidents, planned agricultural expansion and volume of returnees following IDP camp closures and/or decongestion.

Treaty Obligations

The Government of Nigeria is a States Party to both the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention (APMBC) and to the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM). Japan is a key supporter of mine action, not only in Nigeria, but globally.  Previous funding by the People and Government of Japan to UNMAS Nigeria has led to the piloting of innovative approaches in mine action, including the use of electronic talking devices with key EORE and COVID-19 safety messaging as well as conflict preparation and protection activities. Japan emphasized, during the UN Security Council Open Debate on Children and Armed Conflict on 5 July 2023 that, “effective mine action contributes to preventing grave violations against children and ensuring their freedom from fear.”

For further information, please contact:


Mr. Edwin Fagmane, UNMAS Chief of Mine Action Programme, Nigeria, edwin.faigmane@un.org