On International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action today, the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) said despite strong efforts from mine action partners over the past decade, more than 15 million square meters are still contaminated with explosive ordnances across Libya. 

"The indiscriminate use of weapons in civilian areas during the recent conflicts means even urban areas are littered with explosive remnants of war. These remnants of conflict obstruct safe access to education, healthcare and development, and continue to injure or kill long after the fighting has ceased, posing a daily threat to life and livelihoods." UNSMIL added. 

“Mine action efforts are an essential component of Libya’s journey to peace and stability coupled with reforms in the security sector to control explosive ordnance contamination and the proliferation of weapons,” said Special Representative of the Secretary-General Abdoulaye Bathily. 

He added that the threat posed to Libyan citizens undermines stability and the right to a life without fear, while the UNSMIL said it remembers the 19 people, including 14 children, killed by explosive remnants of war in Libya in 2022.