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Nearly 45M square meters in Türkiye cleared of mines since 2015

3 April 2024 19:04 (UTC+04:00)
Nearly 45M square meters in Türkiye cleared of mines since 2015

Nearly 45 million square meters (484 million square feet) in Türkiye have been cleared of mines since 2015, according to defense sources, Azernews reports, citing Anadolu Agency.

A total of 226,000 mines have been destroyed over the past nine years as part of humanitarian demining operations coordinated by the Turkish National Defense Ministry’s National Mine Action Center (MAFAM), according to information obtained from ministry sources.

Since 2015, the center has been working to raise awareness of the risks of anti-personnel landmines, which can cause injuries or fatalities to people living in areas with high mine risk or in close proximity to mined areas in Türkiye.

Meanwhile, mines released during the Russia-Ukraine war continue to pose a threat to maritime traffic in the Black Sea.

Routes followed by drifting mines are determined based on a Turkish Naval Forces data analysis, and mine surveillance is carried out on a 24/7 basis.

Mine disposal activities involve maritime patrol aircraft, helicopters, unmanned aerial vehicles, mine-hunting ships, and patrol vessels.

So far, five mines in the Black Sea have been detected and destroyed by the Turkish Naval Forces.

All such maritime activities are carried out in close coordination with allied countries Bulgaria and Romania under the principle of regional ownership.

For the security of the Istanbul Strait, surveillance has been conducted 24/7 with at least two ships present in the area since March 2022.

Mine surveillance activities are done in coordination with warships, maritime patrol aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, helicopters, and the Black Sea Surveillance Coordination Center.

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