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June 16, 2023

Training for State Department Funded Demining Teams Kicks Off

To promote regional peace and cooperation, the United States partnered with the Mine Action Agency of the Republic of Azerbaijan (ANAMA), the Mines Advisory Group (MAG), the International Eurasia Press Fund (IEPF), and the international community to launch a project training and equipping four 14-person demining teams, two of which will be funded by the U.S. State Department.

It is continuation of the U.S. support for humanitarian demining operations in Azerbaijan.  Landmines and unexploded ordnance across the conflict zone continue to kill and maim civilians, block economic development, and impede the safe return of displaced communities.

The United States is honored to work with Azerbaijani and international partners who are united in support to the ANAMA and its courageous deminers.  Speaking at the event Phillip Tissue, Political Officer at the U.S. Embassy Baku, said that “I stand with admiration and respect for these brave Azerbaijani women and men, here with us today, about to begin their training to serve as Azerbaijan’s newest deminers.”

MAG Country Director Jeanette Dijkstra said the new teams will allow us to promote gender inclusion by establishing the first female demining teams and introduce women into mixed demining teams.  MAG also aims to increase the participation of NGOs in the humanitarian demining work in Azerbaijan.  We will continue to work with ANAMA to strengthen and enhance Azerbaijan’s institutional capacities to address the important work of demining.

With $500,000 in funding announced in November 2021 and $2,000,000 in funding announced in September 2022, U.S assistance will strengthen the technical capacity of demining organizations to clear deadly landmines and unexploded ordnance.  These efforts play a critical role bolstering human security and enabling displaced communities to return to their homes and rebuild their lives safely.

The United States is the world’s largest single financial supporter of conventional weapons destruction, investing over $4.6 billion in more than 120 countries since 1993 to promote international peace and security by addressing the threats that landmines and unexploded ordnance pose to civilians.