The United Kingdom's Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) has pledged over $1.65 million in funding to the Mines Advisory Group (MAG) to support ongoing UXO survey, clearance, and explosive ordnance risk education (EORE) activities in Khammouane province. This funding coincides with MAG's 30th anniversary of UXO operations in Lao PDR and highlights the UK’s long-term commitment to working with MAG in reducing the threat of UXO contamination in Lao PDR.

The generous grant from the UK FCDO will enable MAG to survey 8,270,000 square meters of land, clear 680,800 square meters of high-priority contaminated areas, and conduct 142 explosive ordnance risk education sessions for affected communities in Khammouane province, directly benefitting at least 3,692 individuals. Additionally, the funding will support a dedicated roving team to promptly respond to UXO items reported by local communities.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed today between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the National Regulatory Authority for the UXO/Mine Action Sector in Lao PDR (NRA), and MAG to implement the project’s activities through 31 March 2025. The signing ceremony in Vientiane Capital was attended by Mr. Chomyaeng Phengthongsawat, Director General of the NRA, Mr. Cashel Gleeson, Deputy Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Lao PDR, Mr. Eli Mechanic, MAG Lao PDR Country Director, and other distinguished representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and NRA. 


Mr. Cashel Gleeson, Deputy UK Ambassador, reaffirmed the UK government's commitment to supporting UXO survey and clearance operations in Lao PDR, stating, “The UK Government is extremely proud that we have been one of the largest bilateral donors on this work in Laos, providing over $22m from 2016-2023… We are also very proud that MAG is a UK NGO and I have been lucky enough to have visited their work in Xieng Khouang [and] seen first-hand how this work is reducing the number of people who are killed by unexploded ordnance; how it is reducing the number of injuries; how land is cleared to be farmed; how schools are made safe for children and how wells are safe to be used for drinking water. This is directly contributing to the development of Laos.”

MAG's Country Director, Mr. Eli Mechanic, emphasized the impact of the UK's support for UXO survey and clearance activities in Lao PDR and long-standing partnership with MAG, saying, "As MAG celebrates its 30th anniversary of operations in Lao PDR, we are grateful for the ongoing support from the United Kingdom’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. This funding will enable us to continue our vital work to provide UXO survey and clearance and explosive ordnance risk education, ensuring the safety and well-being of the people in Khammouane province. Together, we are making significant strides towards eliminating the threat of UXO contamination and creating a safer future for children and their families in affected communities."

UXO contamination remains a critical risk in Lao PDR, primarily affecting vulnerable populations in rural villages and towns. With three decades of experience, MAG has been at the forefront of land clearance efforts and has provided life-saving explosive ordnance risk education, resulting in a significant reduction in UXO accidents and the safe use of land for agriculture and infrastructure development in Laos. Over the past 30 years, MAG has cleared more than 127 million square meters of land and destroyed over 344,000 items of cluster munition remnants and other UXO, making substantial contributions to socio-economic development and progress towards achieving Lao PDR’s Sustainable Development Goals.


Learn more about our work in Laos here.



The Mines Advisory Group (MAG) is a global humanitarian and advocacy organisation that finds, removes and destroys landmines, cluster munitions and unexploded bombs from places affected by conflict.

MAG also provides education programmes, particularly for children, so people can live, work and play as safely as possible until they clear the land.

The organisation, which employs some 6,000 people in over 30 countries, also delivers work to reduce armed violence by educating people about the risks of small arms and light weapons and by destroying and marking weapons and helping authorities to safely store arms and ammunition.

Since 1989, MAG has helped over 20 million people in 70 countries rebuild their lives after war. In 1997, MAG shared the Nobel Peace Prize for its role in banning landmines.

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For media enquiries, please contact:

Katie Harrison (English)

Grants and Communications Manager
+856 20 555 35913

Phutsaphone Khounlivong (Lao/English)
Communications Manager
+856 20 555 29573