Lebanon to Launch Campaign to Promote Public's Awareness of Mine


Xinhua News Agency
8 January 2002

     Israel withdrew its troops from south Lebanon in May 2000 after a 22-year occupation, leaving over 130,000 landmines there. Since then, 21 people, including 14 children, have been killed, while 155 others have been wounded or maimed by mine explosions in south Lebanon. 

BEIRUT, Lebanon, 8 jan 02 (Xinhua)--Lebanon on Tuesday announced that it will soon launch a nationwide program to promote the public's awareness of the potential threat of landmines, the official NNA news agency reported. 

The program, to be launched by the National De-mining Office (NDO), is the second phase of a campaign to raise public awareness of the dangers of land mines. The campaign will start on January 10 and end at the end of 2002. 

A NDO spokesman said that the program is aimed at reducing the number of casualties caused by mines. 

"Due to a lack of adequate information regarding landmines, it has become necessary to launch an awareness campaign immediately, which would produce a radical drop in the number of civilian casualties," the spokesman added. 

The campaign will target all students at all levels, residents in areas where there are landmines, people working on agricultural land, those who are returning to their villages and visitors to liberated areas, NNA said. 

The first phase covered about 50,000 students in more than 140 schools, and 200,000 citizens in 150 villages. The NDO, formed in 1998, is the only national unit responsible for collecting and distributing information on landmine problems. Israel withdrew its troops from south Lebanon in May 2000 after a 22-year occupation, leaving over 130,000 landmines there. Since then, 21 people, including 14 children, have been killed, while 155 others have been wounded or maimed by mine explosions in south Lebanon. 

 
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