UNOPS Mine Action Advisor visits Project Masam Headquarters in Aden

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The Managing Director of Project Masam, Ousama Algosaibi this week received at the project’s headquarters in Aden the Mine Action Advisor at the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) Charles Frisby, and expert Javed Habibullah.

During the meeting, held on Monday 25 March, Algosaibi explained to advisor Frisby the devastating impacts of landmines on civilians in Yemen, highlighted the most mine contaminated areas, and pointed to the international community’s shortcomings in regards to the mine plague in Yemen.

Additionally, Algosaibi condemned the lack of action to contribute to humanitarian landmine clearance in Yemen, and urged the international community to exert more pressures on the Iran-backed Houthis to stop the group’s landmine-planting activities and hand over minefield maps – according to the rules of international humanitarian law.

Algosaibi also reviewed Project Masam’s achievements over the past years in Yemen, and the successes achieved by the project in partnership with the Yemen Executive Mine Action Centre (YEMAC), stressing the important role of civilians in Yemen as a key partner in the project’s success.

The managing director then explained that every week the project publishes its clearance statistics in detail to media outlets – which he claimed is not done by other demining organisations working in Yemen, effectively wavering transparency about the scale of the problem in Yemen and the efforts made to combat it.

For his part, expert Vince Farrell, Chief Technical Advisor of Project Masam, briefed the visiting delegation on the mechanisms and means by which Project Masam works, reviewing models of sophisticated and camouflaged mines that the project teams have removed from nine Yemeni governorates, and the methods used to destroy and dispose of them to ensure a safe environment for civilians across the country.

Frisby, meanwhile, praised the role played by Project Masam in Yemen, its achievements over the past years, and its contribution to securing civilian lives as well as removing mines and other remnants of war.

He spoke about the importance of the role played by Project Masam, and the level of organisation the project has reached, whether in fieldwork, or with regards to the publishing of statistics and daily achievements of the project in Yemen.

The UN advisor added: “Yemen suffers from a real disaster due to mines, IEDs, and remnants of war, and everyone must extend a helping hand to the Yemeni people to rid them of this scourge and bring life back to normal in all Yemeni regions.”