(MENAFN- Trend News Agency) Details added: first version posted on 12:26
BAKU, Azerbaijan, May 26. The international
assistance provided to Azerbaijan in de-mining is like a drop in
the ocean, Director of LINKS Europe Foundation Dennis Sammut said
at the 2nd international humanitarian conference on
"Combating mine threat - the path to sustainable development" in
Baku, trend reports.
According to Sammut, he has been shocked during his recent visit
"Seeing every destroyed house, I thought that families lived
there many years ago. We must approach the issue of de-mining in
the South Caucasus from a humanitarian point of view. Today,
600,000 people who have been refugees since 1990s cannot return to
their homes here,” he noted.
“Mines prevent people from returning to their native lands. The
international community must help Azerbaijan in this matter, given
the scale of the problem. We must work together, focus on the
humanitarian sphere of de-mining, and provide technical support.
This is a human rights issue, the inhabitants of these places have
the right to return to their homes,” director of LINKS Europe
“We must draw the attention of the international community to
Aghdam, as well as convey to the world what was done in Aghdam," he
Besides, according to Sammut, countries should accede to the
"Azerbaijan is a large and rich country with a strong army and
good diplomatic ties. We must take into account the leadership of
Azerbaijan in the region. Azerbaijan can take the lead in the field
of de-mining in the region. The country has extensive experience in
this area and can share it,” the foundation's head pointed out.
“I propose to hold, an international conference on de-mining in
the South Caucasus at the end of the year. We must involve a number
of countries in this effort, take an ambitious and innovative
approach. Working together, we can turn the South Caucasus into a
mine-free region by 2030," he added.
Following the liberation of its lands from Armenian occupation
in the 2020 second Karabakh war, Azerbaijan from Nov. 2020 started
carrying out operations on clearing its lands from mines, booby
traps, and various weapons left behind by the Armenian troops.
The estimates done following the end of the war, have shown that
302 Azerbaijani citizens have become victims of the mines, 57 of
the citizens were killed, and 245 were injured.
Since November 2020, as a result of large-scale mine clearance
measures carried out by the country, an area of 81,386 hectares has
been cleared. A total of 88,260 mines were identified and defused,
including 28,259 anti-personnel mines, 15,303 anti-tank mines and
44,698 units of unexploded ordnance.