Call to free SAARC nations of landmines

Kathmandu, July 18:

The Ban Landmine Campaign Nepal (NCBL) has requested SAARC member states to make the SAARC region landmine-free.

The request came in the run-up to the upcoming 15th SAARC Summit.

A release issued by the landmine campaign office today stated that it has urged all representatives of SAARC countries to sign the Mine Ban Convention-Ottawa Treaty.

It also called the representatives to sign the convention on Cluster Munitions.

The letter, addressed to the chairperson of the summit and participants, has highlighted threats caused by landmines and explosives in the SAARC region.

In the region, landmines and Improvised Explosive Devices have been killing and maiming innocent people, it said, adding that they have prevented people from exploiting natural resources.

Citing that at least 473,000 mine survivors in the world were leading painful lives and seeking assistance, the letter stated that 156 countries have agreed to ban the explosives.