Hai Lang, Quang Tri (14 December 2020) – 83-year-old Trần Canh’s family has lived in Tan Phuoc village of Hai Lam commune, Hai Lang district, Quang Tri Province for ten years. Like many of the 200 families currently residing in the village, Mr. Canh’s family moved here from a flood-prone area following a local resettlement scheme.
Since their resettlement, the families have tried to make their living by planting acacia and tending cattle. Many families have encountered unexploded cluster munitions and other explosive ordnance while doing so – however, because of economic pressure, they defy the risk and continue farming their land.
Last Tuesday, Mr. Canh was pleased to invite members of a RENEW/NPA technical survey team to sit in his house veranda to shelter from the rain during their lunch break.
Talking to the team leader Le Khanh Linh, the elderly man expressed his appreciation to the teams, because he was aware of their hard work in his village to define contaminated land for full clearance.
On 20 November 2020, RENEW/NPA deployed eight technical survey teams to work in Tan Phuoc village, to follow up on explosive items identified by the non-technical survey team. After two weeks of working in unfavorable weather conditions, the teams have identified two confirmed hazardous areas (CHA) covering nearly 390,000 square meters of land and safely destroyed 27 cluster submunitions and six other explosive items.
RENEW/NPA have reported these CHAs to the Quang Tri Mine Action Center for future clearance, to ensure the safety of Tan Phuoc villagers. Cluster munitions remnants survey is a critical first step in RENEW/NPA efforts to produce an overall map of contamination from cluster munition remnants, which enables provincial authorities and clearance organizations to effectively plan clearance operations, contributing to fulfilling the strategy of making Quang Tri safe from the impact of explosive ordnance by 2025.
The survey and clearance operations of RENEW/NPA in Quang Tri Province are funded by the U.S. Department of State and UK Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office.
Project RENEW was established in 2001 as a joint effort between the government of Quang Tri Province and interested INGOs to “restore the environment and neutralize the effects of the war”.
Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) has worked in Vietnam since 2007 and collaborated with national and provincial authorities to implement capacity development, survey and clearance projects in Hanoi, Quang Tri, Thua Thien Hue and Quang Binh provinces.