Japan to offer financial assistance for demining in Jaffna peninsula

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 18 March 2009, 15:39 GMT]
A delegation of key officials of the Japanese Embassy in Sri Lanka which visited Jaffna recently had intimated Japan’s inclination to provide financial assistance to continue the demining activities in Jaffna peninsula which has been curtailed in recent times, sources close to the Coordinating Committee for demining projects in Jaffna District Secretariat said. Areas in Changaththaanai, Madduvil and Oorkaavattu’rai have been earmarked to benefit from Japan's help in the first stage, Danish Demining Organization (DDO) sources said.

Japan donates a great amount of money to the demining projects in progress in Vavuniyaa and Mannaar districts.

Halo Trust and DDO, the only demining organizations functioning in Jaffna peninsula, had almost closed last year due to insecurity and risk of death for its personnel.

DDO is presently engaged in demining activities only in Oorkaavattu’rai in the islets of Jaffna while Halo Trust has constricted its service to Achchuveali area only.

Areas inside Sri Lanka Army (SLA) High Security Zones (HSZs), around SLA camps, Front Defence Line (FDL) positions from Ki’laali to Naakarkoayil and several other places in Jaffna peninsula remain mine-infested.

More mines are being sown in the above areas even now.

Several international countries are reluctant to give financial assistance to demining activities in the peninsula due to the above discouraging situation.

Norway has recently expressed consent to contribute financially to demining in Jaffna peninsula but the Coordinating Committee for Demining is yet to receive any positive information so far.


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