Photo: Sean Sutton/MAG
Extensive stockpiles of weapons and explosives that had been stored in bunkers became unsecured during the conflict, leaving open access to those who wanted it.
Most households now have small arms and light weapons, which, in the face of political uncertainty, they’re reluctant to give up. The result is that children in particular are at risk of accidental injury from unsecured guns in their houses.
There are also wider implications for regional stability, with reports of items being moved across borders into neighbouring countries and sub-Saharan Africa, and falling into the hands of non-state military groups.
Landmines are generally divided into two main groups - anti-personnel and anti-tank - and have four main component parts: an outer structure made of either plastic, wood, metal, Bakelite, rubber or even glass; a fuse or firing mechanism; a detonator; and high explosives.
Some contain thousands of pieces of shrapnel, designed to fire out to great distances, while others have been made with a minimum amount of metal and are therefore difficult to detect using metal detectors.Unexploded ordnanceExplosive weapons - such as bombs, rockets, missiles, mortars and grenades - that did not explode when they were used and still pose a risk of detonation.Small arms'Small arms' include revolvers, self-loading pistols, rifles and carbines, sub-machine guns, assault rifles, light machine guns.light weapons'Light weapons' include hand-held under-barrel and mounted grenade launchers, heavy machine guns, portable anti-aircraft and anti-tank guns, recoilless rifles, portable launchers of anti-tank missile and rocket systems, portable launchers of anti-aircraft missile systems (MANPADS), mortars of less than 100mm calibre.
Our work here in 2013
Land cleared: 1,918,750m²
Unexploded ordnance removed & destroyed: 108,600
Risk Education safety sessions given: 824
Men, women and children we helped directly: 18,740
Risk Education includes the provision of safety messages to at-risk individuals and communities, raising awareness of the dangers and promoting safe behaviour.
I would like to thank MAG for their efforts to give us a safer life... Read more
Photo gallery: Conflict response in Libya
Documenting MAG's work to reduce the threat to civilians from unexploded ordnance.
Makeshift 'museums' have been set up in many places, displaying as a reminder of what happened a vast range of mostly fused munitions, from cluster munitions to large calibre rockets. At this one, on Misrata's Tripoli Street, unexploded cluster munitions have been used to write 'February 17' (known as the day of revolt) in Arabic.
[All photos: Sean Sutton/MAG, June 2011]
They open in mid-air and release numerous (sometimes hundreds) explosive bomblets - 'submunitions' - over a wide area.
Most of these bomblets explode immediately, but many don't, killing and maiming civilians long after a conflict has ended.