UNMAS Director calls for urgent acceleration of mine action efforts in Yemen

Ms. Ilene Cohn, Director of UNMAS, addressing the media during a press conference in Sana'a airport on 8 December 2022 (Photo: Alaa Mohammed)

8 Dec 2022

UNMAS Director calls for urgent acceleration of mine action efforts in Yemen

The Director of the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) Ms Ilene Cohn concluded a week-long visit to Yemen where she visited Hudaydah, one of the most mine and explosive remnants of war-affected governorates in Yemen.

Over the last 6 months, UNMHA has recorded 159 casualties from landmine and ERW-related incidents in Hudaydah, with over 50 percent of those injured or killed being women and children.

During a press conference held on her departure today, Ms Cohn told the press that mines and explosive remnants of war have been responsible for a large number of civilian casualties, and they continue to kill and injure innocent Yemenis and denying many more Yemeni families access to their homes, their farms and other livelihood sources, exacerbating the devastating impacts of the conflict.

She stressed the urgency of accelerating mine action efforts and stressed the responsibility of the authorities to protect the civilian population. She reiterated the calls by the UN Security Council last month for all possible precautions to be taken to protect the civilian population of Yemen from explosive ordnance, including identifying, marking, and clearing dangerous areas.

Ms Cohn welcomed efforts by UN partners in Yemen to support mine action, including UNMHA’s work in Hudaydah as part of its mandate to oversee mine action in the governorate.