Somalia: UN helps to train refugees in landmine awareness

15 May 2001

Tens of thousands of Somali refugees living in two camps in Djibouti are being trained in mine awareness and safety measures by the United Nations in order to reduce possible future injuries and fatalities should they encounter mines or unexploded ordnance upon their return home, the UN office in Somalia announced today.

"The trainers will be able to reach 500 refugees per camp, per week," said Justin Brady, a consultant for the UN Development Programme (UNDP) Somalia office, which is implementing the project.

Ten Somali refugees - eight men and two women - were selected to become trainers, and spent a week learning how to teach mine awareness to their fellow refugees. The refugees live in two camps in southern Djibouti, each holding approximately 11,000 refugees, most originally from the northwestern Somali region of Awdal.

The project is being carried out with logistical support from UNDP Djibouti, funding from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and assistance from the World Food Programme (WFP) and the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

 

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