Italy to Aid Mine Clearance in South Lebanon
Italy will donate $250,000 to help Lebanon clear landmines in the south, reported the Daily Star newspaper, quoting a statement by the Italian foreign ministry.
The money will be also used to finance a mine-prevention program and a mine-awareness program for residents of the liberated areas in the South, the statement said.
It said the funding will also help buy special equipment to clear mines.
The donation is part of an assistance program entitled "Italy for South Lebanon" recently initiated by the Italian government to assist the south, said the paper.
Italy contributed five advanced mine-detectors last year, said the paper.
Russia announced last month also that it would contribute in mine clearance, according to press report.
The United Nations estimates that Israel, following its withdrawal from south Lebanon in May last year, left behind at least 130,000 mines.
Israel provided maps showing the location of mines, but the UN has complained that they are vague and do not include the northern edge of the former Israeli zone, said AFP.
The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon has two demining units, one from Poland, the other from Ukraine.
Many Lebanese have been killed or injured from mines in the area -- Albawaba.com