MAG supported Burundi, one of the world’s poorest countries, in clearing its territory of landmines.
Photo: MAG Burundi
The work of MAG and Burundi’s Civilian Defence department – responsible for humanitarian mine action and Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) – opened up safe access to agricultural and grazing land, electric infrastructures, a dam, and cleared high risk areas near schools. Mine risk education was also given to vulnerable communities
MAG trained staff from the Civilian Defence to deal with future dangers from explosives that have failed to detonate or that have been discarded, which continue to jeopardise the security of much of the population.
MAG also cleared contamination from landmines and unexploded ordnance around electricity pylons and former military positions in four provinces. The national electricity provider REGIDESO had been unable to access pylons to conduct essential repair works, putting cities and industrial infrastructure at risk of power failures.
Arms management and destruction
From 2007 to 2013, MAG worked directly with the Police Nationale du Burundi (PNB, Burundian Police) and the Force de Defense Nationale (FDN, Burundian Army), developing the bodies' capacities to safely secure and manage their stocks of small arms and light weapons (SALW).
Following a nationwide survey of army stockpiles, MAG trained and supervised a team from the FDN to destroy surplus and obsolete weapons and ammunition.
In 2009 and 2010, MAG also supported the civilian disarmament campaign by destroying small arms and light weapons surrendered by the population to the Commission for SALW and Civilian Disarmament.
MAG’s contribution helped reduce the risks of accidents (such as ammunition depots explosions) and – by improving the security and the management of SALW – limit the risks of leakage of state-owned weapons into criminal hands, contributing to a decrease in armed violence in Burundian society.