The International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action has been established in 2005 by the Resolution of the United Nations General Assembly. The UN called on to create and develop a national potential for mine action in states where mines and explosive remnants of war pose threat to the safety, health and life of civilians, or impede social and economic development efforts at state and local levels.
The problems caused by the mine threat are highly relevant for Donbass citizens, where the armed conflict has been going on for five years. Moreover, according to the UN, the East of Ukraine is one of the most mine-contaminated regions: “The last three years have seen the highest rate of accidents involving mines in the world”.
In this regard, the issue of humanitarian demining is paid special attention by authorities of the Donetsk People’s Republic: regular awareness-raising measures are carried out to provide more knowledge about mine threat.
However, the issue of mine action will remain acute for years in the territory of Donbass, especially due to the aggressive actions of the armed formations of Ukraine, which aggravate the situation. Thus, despite the commitments stipulated by the Minsk Agreements and the Decision of the Tripartite Contact Group regarding mine action, the OSCE SMM continues to document the presence of mines, including newly planted ones.
The Human Rights Ombudsman in the Donetsk People’s Republic Daria Morozova actively interacts with international organizations as part of her activities, providing information on violations of the international humanitarian law by the Ukrainian armed forces against Donbass residents, including those related to disrespect of the Geneva Convention for the protection of civilian persons in time of war, as well as the agreements concluded in the framework of the Minsk negotiating process. The active position of the world community in preventing such incidents is an important condition for the de-escalation of the conflict and its peaceful settlement.