Harvesting cassava in Pailin, Cambodia, on land cleared of mines by MAG
This area has some of the most fertile soil in the country, but it is also amongst the most highly contaminated places. MAG's work – removing landmines, cluster munitions, air-dropped bombs and other unexploded ordnance (UXO) – is essential to development here.
These deadly items stifle economic growth by hampering access to land, in a country where around 80 per cent of the rural population is dependent on agriculture or related activities for their livelihoods.
"People in Cambodia are exposed to a variety of risks that could cause relatively wealthy households to become poorer anddrive the poor into destitution (World Bank, 2005)... Mines/UXOs cause death or injury to family member – the “breadwinner”, the caregiver (mother), or children. They can also cause loss of livelihood assets – death or injury to draft animals. The presence of UXO / landmines or even the fear of presence constrains farmers’ ability to open new land for cultivation." – World Food Programme