(SMC) - Sudanese Defense Minister Ali Mohammed Salim announced on Tuesday that 14 civilians had fallen victim to landmines this year
Speaking to parliament he also said that 98,845,667 square meters are now free of landmines and extradition local communities, have destroyed 101 anti-personnel mines, 6 anti-tank mines, 701 explosive devices and 249,669 sub-munitions this year.
He also reiterated that the armed forces have been able to extend control over many sites across Darfur, Blue Nile and South Kordofan this year which has resulted in better security in the areas.
The ministry also expressed concern with the cases about using chemical weapons in Darfur and formed a specialized investigation committee for convention prohibiting chemical weapons from National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS).
On infrastructure, he added we strive to develop and establish airports, noting that working on al-Deain and Zalingi embankments make good progress, and El Obeid airport runway was rebuilt, and the Nyala airport runway had been repaired with asphalt coating, now we are working on Kinana Airport Expansion Project to accommodate civil aircraft.
He also explained the ministry’s new year plan which focuses on developing defense systems, modernization of the armed forces, cut off illegal sources of weapons and promote respect for the State and focuses on border demarcation on disputed areas as Halayib, in addition to strength the military industry for self-sufficiency and continuing the effort to combat the landmines with global organizations, calling for increasing the armed forces salaries to attract the youths and constructive working environment.
Landmines and Explosive Remnants of War are a big problem in Sudan. According to UN Mine Action Service (UNMAS) in Sudan, they can be found in 235 locations in the country. They have been responsible for the deaths or maiming of over 2,000 people since 2002 – around a quarter of whom were children.