Mozambican Women Deminers and Turkish Paramedics with UNDP Project Associate

Border Management Flagship project : Demining The Border and Supply Modern Patrol Tools

Supporting Stronger and Humanitarian Border Surveillance

by Demining Turkey's Eastern Borders and Supplying Modern Border Patrol Tools

Every year, several hundreds of innocent people step on a landmine and are killed or injured. In addition to the individual suffering, landmines are also causing serious social and economic problems hindering development. Mine action aims to reduce the impact of the mines with a number of measures ranging from de-mining to victim assistance.

Combating anti-personnel landmines is a top priority for the European Commission's security agenda. When it comes to Turkey and its unique situation, EU support on mine action is framed within the efforts to reform border management. Landmines were laid by Turkish authorities as a tool for securing the borders between 1984 and 1999. Today, Turkey, the EU and the UN are jointly working to clear those mines while at the same time ensuring humanitarian, modern and stronger means of border security.

We all have a common goal with this demining project: To remove the landmines at Turkey's eastern borders and replace them with humanitarian and effective border surveillance tools for more secure borders. This way, we reduce human suffering, increase socio-economic development and strengthen border management at an entry point of irregular migration and all forms of illegal border crossings into Turkey.

To serve our common interest, this two-phase project clears the landmines and supports building the capacity of the Turkish Mine Action Centre. Staff in charge of borders is furthermore trained on risk-based border surveillance. The project also supplies 82 patrol vehicles equipped with radars and thermal sensors to intensify the mobile surveillance capacity of the Land Forces.

Overall the funding for all these activities amounts to €106 million (EU Contribution €80 million). The EU contribution is provided by the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA), that is the means by which the EU supports reforms in Turkey with financial assistance and transfer of know-how, and helps build up the capacity of Turkey to take on the obligations of EU membership.

A Mozambican Woman Training of a Deminer in Igdır in June 2016

Cover Photo : Mozambican Women Deminers and Turkish Paramedics with UNDP Project Associate, Iğdır, Turkey (Photo taken in June 2016)