Switzerland gives US$3 million for mine action in Cambodia
Phnom Penh – Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) has given US$ 3 million for mine clearance in Cambodia. The fund will be used to support various activities under the Clearing for Results Phase II (CfR) project, which is implemented by Cambodian Mine Action Authority (CMAA) and managed by UNDP, until the end of 2015.
Ms. Rahel Boesch, SDC’s Director of Cooperation, and Ms. Setsuko Yamazaki, UNDP Country Director, signed the funding agreement during a ceremony on 26 November, which was witnessed by H.E. Prak Sokhonn, CMAA’s Vice President.
In her remarks, Ms. Boesch said the financial contribution demonstrated the firm commitment of Switzerland to fight against anti-personnel mines and the consequences of cluster munitions, as well as other explosive remnants of war. “It is our conviction that all citizens in the world deserve a minimum of human security and protection from the danger posed by these weapons not only during, but also post-violent conflict,” she said.
Since 2006, the Clearing for Results project – which has also received support from other international donors including Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), Australian Agency for International Development (AusAid) and Austria – has helped get rid of the deadly devices and free more than 54 square kilometres of land in Cambodia. Some two-thirds of the cleared areas have been converted into farmland. The project has also contributed to strengthening of national capacities to regulate, coordinate and monitor the sector.
“With the USD3 Million from SDC, the project is expected to fast track the achievement of the mine clearance objectives so as to release more land for productive use by the communities,” Setsuko Yamazaki, Country Director of UNDP Cambodia, said in her remarks at the ceremony.