US envoy inaugurates barracks for demining unit

Boquisso- Mozambique (PANA) -- US Ambassador to Mozambique, Sharon Wilkinson, Saturday inaugurated barracks for a demining unit of the Mozambican Armed Forces (FADM) at Boquisso, 20 km north of Maputo.
The Boquisso barracks have been rehabilitated with funds from the humanitarian demining programme of the US State Department, and have the capacity to house up to 200 men.
According to Wilkinson, this funding reflects the commitment of the US government to help the FADM develop its own mine clearance capacity.
She added that although donors and NGOs have an important role to play, the Mozambican government also needed its own capacity to deal with the demining problem.
The US government boasts that it grants 80 million US dollars a year to some 37 countries plagued by land mines (which were, in several cases, planted by groups supported by the US government during its various cold war crusades).
Despite the US support for demining, the US government has still refused to sign the Ottawa treaty outlawing the use of anti-personnel land mines.
In Mozambique the US has provided 25 million dollars to assist demining operations since 1993.
Wilkinson said that this year the US will allocate 1.
84 million dollars to demining.
This would include the continued removal of land mines along the sabotaged Sena railway line between Beira and Malawi, and a contribution towards the institutional development of the National Demining Institute.
Also in Boquisso, the US humanitarian assistance programme is supported a second level primary school (teaching grades six and seven) and a health post.
The support for the school and the health post includes repairing the electrical installations, supplying equipment, and the provision of medicines.

21 أبريل 2001 19:43:00

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