Coalition Against Landmines(CALM) Helping child landmine survivors get limbs and attend school

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The history of landmines dates back to 1935 in Ethiopia. The 1935-40 Italian invasion; the 1977-78 Ethio/Somalia Ogaden war; the 1980 border war with Sudan; the 1975-1991 internal conflict; and the 1998-2000 Ethio/Eritrean wars are believed to be the major war periods in Ethiopia.


Landmine Monitor (2006) reports that "the war with Eritrea resulted in significant contamination of the Tigray region and, to a lesser extent, the Afar and left approximately 364,000 people displaced. The Somali region is contaminated by mines and unexploded ordinance (UXO) remains from the Ogaden war.


A nationwide Landmine Impact Survey (LIS) completed in 2004 determined that more than 1.9 million people live in landmine-impacted communities. A total of 1,492 communities were positively identified as contaminated with landmines and UXO.


Landmine and explosive war remnants causalities

Indicating the United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) Mine Action Coordination Center (MACC) report, Landmine Monitor 2006 reports that from 2000 to 2004, 114 Ethiopians and Eritreans were killed and 293 injured in 261 mine incidents in the UNMEE mission area of the Temporary Security Zone (TSZ) alone. The majority of casualties were shepherds. 

According to the Government of Ethiopia 2004-2007 Tigray region district level village profile (those districts bordering with Eritrea), out of the total 343 victims reported, 220 were under 18 years of age. Grazing land, farm land and water point accidents claimed 82% of the victims while road side and residential area explosives claimed 16%. More than 60% of the victims were shepherds followed by farmers, students and others.

Landmine casualties continued to be reported in Ethiopia. As there is no nationwide data collection mechanism in the country, the total number of landmine and explosive war remnants casualties remains unknown. Very limited casualty data is available for certain areas of the country.


Survivors Assistance

Landmine Monitor 2006 reports, as of April 2006, there was no comprehensive victim assistance strategy in Ethiopia. There is a project dealing with war victims, but civilians affected by mines are not included in it.

Health services are very limited, mainly situated in the urban centers. It is estimated that more than 50 percent of the people live more than 10 kilometers away from the nearest facility with poor transportation network. According to Landmine Survivors Network (LSN), only 10 percent of mine casualties have access to basic health care and rehabilitation. Provision for psychosocial support and economic reintegration are very limited.