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IRAQ: Over a thousand hazardous items removed from village in Kirkuk

Anti-tank landmines in Iraq

Some of the 78 anti-tank landmines removed from Chimany Ferqa village. 

Pictured above are some of the 1,189 hazardous items MAG removed from Chimany Ferqa village in Kirkuk.

Among the items destroyed were 78 anti-tank landmines, 307 anti-personnel landmines, 114 trip flares and 690 small arms ammunition.

MAG teams came to the village after an anti-tank mine was found by a local farmer. Once safely removed, the items were transferred for a controlled bulk demolition in a designated area.

"Because of MAG’s clearance activities, our village has enough land to farm and use for grazing," said Mr. Asad, the farmer who came across the anti-tank mine. "I thank MAG from all of my heart."

Mr. Shwan, a shepherd from Chimany Ferqa, added: "Thanks to MAG, I have no fear from landmines and unexploded ordnance. MAG cleared a large area for us and taught us what to do if we spot a dangerous item.

"We all know how to contact MAG and we are very happy to know that they will respond very quickly."

The area had been used for ammunition and landmines storage by the former Iraqi military during the eight-year Iraq-Iran War.

"When our teams started working on this huge task, they started by carefully excavating the area using mechanical assets [pictured above right]," explained Muhammad Geology, MAG’s Mechanical Field Operations Manager in Chamchamal. "Then the excavated soil was manually checked by the Conventional Weapons Destruction team.

"After safely removing all these hazardous items, our excavators reinstated the excavated soil back to its original place. This meant that the landowner didn’t have to spend time preparing his farmland, because we did that for him."

MAG continues to deliver risk education to different groups of local communities to ensure that the villagers can live and work safely in such a high contaminated region.

MAG relies on donations to clear the remnants of war, such as landmines. Please donate online now. Your generosity makes a remarkable difference to the lives of families affected by conflict.

19 July 2013

  Mechanical assets in Iraq
The area is carefully excavated, before the soil is checked for landmines and other hazardous items.
[Photos: MAG Iraq]


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Thanks to all the public, institutional and government donors to MAG's operations in Iraq, including:
• Act for Peace
Australian Aid
German Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Irish Aid
Isle of Man Overseas Aid Committee
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands
• NVESD HD R and D Program
Sida - Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency
Stichting Vluchteling
US Department of State's Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement
Without this support, MAG's lifesaving work in the country could not be carried out.

About MAG

MAG (Mines Advisory Group) saves and improves lives by reducing the devastating effects armed violence and remnants of conflict have on people around the world.
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Co-laureate of the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize  |  Registered as a charitable company in the UK  |  Company no: 4016409  Charity no: 1083008  |  ISO 9001:2008 accredited  |  International Mine Action Standards compliant  |  Signatory of the ICRC Code of Conduct  |  Member of the Fundraising Standards Board scheme  |  Registered office: Suite 3A, South Central, 11 Peter Street, Manchester, M2 5QR, United Kingdom