Land release in Lebanon for Socio-Economic development

Mine Action project to allow land of the Alay and Baabda regions to be used by the locals again after years of contamination.

© Mikkel Rytter Poulsen

DanChurchAid Lebanon

The Issue

62 communities in Aley and Baabda in Mount Lebanon are confirmed to be contaminated by landmines, cluster munition and other explosive remnants of war, posing a threat to life and limb, and affecting residential areas, agriculture, and grazing land. Of 157 confirmed hazardous areas, the Lebanon Mine Action Center considers 76 to be high priority for clearance. Lebanon has been in an economic and political crisis since September 2019, and mine/explosive remnants of war (ERW) clearance contributes to stability and improving the socioeconomic situation by releasing land for productive and safe use.

The Project

DCA’s overall objective is to support and assist the Government of Lebanon through the Lebanon Mine Action Center in achieving their convention obligation and national mine action priorities following decades of armed conflicts and to support socio-economic development in high priority mine affected communities in Aley and Baabda. DCA implemented a 12-month project to survey and clear tasks that have a high socio-economic impact in the Mount Lebanon districts of Aley and Baabda. The project adopted a land release approach to ensure efficiency, conducting non-technical survey to recommend cancellation of land for which there is no evidence of contamination, and technical survey to reduce hazardous areas, thus avoiding unnecessary costly clearance activities.

The Change

The project supported socio-economic development in high priority mine affected communities in Aley and Baabda, and overall reduced the risk of death and injury from landmines, cluster munitions and other unexploded ordnance. Specifically, the clearance of mines and ERWs returned land and infrastructure to productive use, and the facilitated education on mines and ERWs increases knowledge on the risk and placement of contaminated areas.

The Results

The anticipated results are:

  • Between 100.000 m2 and 135,000 m2 of high priority land cleared or release through technical survey
  • 45 hazardous areas either cancelled, reduced, or confirmed.
  • 76 communities are made aware of the locations and risks posed by explosive hazards in their area.

Our Work

DCA has been conducting clearance in Lebanon since 2007, and in Mount Lebanon since 2010 where it is the only operator in 2023. It has cleared more than eight km2 of contaminated land, resulting in the destruction of over 10,696 cluster munitions, 4,149 antipersonnel mines, and 600 other UXO. It has a strong fully nationalized operational team with an in-depth knowledge of the region. DCA is accredited to conduct clearance and technical survey and is in the process of acquiring accreditation for non-technical survey (NTS). A well-established organizational structure is in place with good management, finance, administration, and logistical support.

About this project

Project title: Land release in Baabda and Aley districts, Mount Lebanon for socio-economic development

Project period: September 2020 – August 2022

Funding: USD 994,840

Donor: PM-WRA – U.S. Department of State

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