De-mining Implemented in Area of 1 285 725 m2 in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan, Baku / corr. Trend S.Agayeva / De-mining has been carried out in an area of 1,285,725 m2 in Azerbaijan in April 2007. During this period, 49,786 mines and unexploded ammunition (PHS) have been discovered and rendered harmless, the Azerbaijani National Agency for Mine Action (ANAMA) informs.
Twenty-two dogs, 156 workers, 15 PHS operators, 8 first aid doctors and nearly 100 auxiliary employees have been involved in the clean-up programme. During this period, an area of 47,882,491 m2 has been cleaned up in Azerbaijan. Approximately 216,565 mines and PHS have been discovered. Since September 2001 some 53 people have been killed and 122 injured as a result of 86 mine explosions.
The conflict between the two countries of the South Caucasus arose in 1988 due to the territorial claims of Armenia against Azerbaijan. Armenia has occupied 20% of the Azerbaijani lands including Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven Districts of the country surrounding it. Since 1992 to the present time, these territories have been under the occupation of the Armenian Forces. In 1994 Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a cease-fire agreement at which time active hostilities ended. The Co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group ( Russia, France and USA) hold peaceful negotiations.