Kicking-off the 2017 Lend Your Leg Campaign
Today, ITF kicked off the fifth consecutive edition of the Lend Your Leg campaign with the intention of raising awareness on the mine issue among the Slovenian public. Both globally and regionally landmines and other explosive remnants of war (ERW) have detrimental effects not just on the safety and security of the civilian population but on the broader development efforts as well.
64 countries and other areas were contaminated by landmines/ERW in 2015. The same year witnessed 6,461 landmine/ERW casualties, of which at least 1,672 were killed, marking a 75 % increase from casualties recorded for 2014. As such, the casualty total in 2015 reached the highest annual number of recorded casualties since 2006. About 171 km2 of land was reported to be cleared of landmines in 2015 and nearly 158,000 antipersonnel mines and some 14,000 antivehicle mines were destroyed in the context of mine clearance.
In addition to the impact on the usability and accessibility of land, landmines/ERW prevent the search of remains of individuals who are still missing from wartime. There are also dangers of obsolescence or improper storage of ammunition and other weapons.
Over the past 20 years, ITF has been committed to addressing the above-mentioned issues and making a tangible difference for the people living in mine-affected areas. By successfully partnering up with 31 countries, ITF has been able to raise over 414 million USD of donations which enabled the clearance of 139 million m² of land.
For that purpose, we invite people to roll up their pant legs, symbolically lend their legs and express support for mine victims and mine action efforts. On 4 April, the International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action, ITF will conclude the campaign by organising a public event in Ljubljana, where we will present demining activities and raise awareness on mine action.