Mine/UXO incidents data collection in Kosovo
Last week (28.02), the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) conducted a training workshop at the Institute of Public Health (IPH) for the staff who will be in charge of gathering data on incidents from mines and other unexploded ordnance.
Nine persons attended this training which focused on data collection methodology. In cooperation with the Institute of Public Health, a plan of action has been drawn on working procedures for collecting data, covering the whole process since the occurrence of the incident till the transmission of information to the Department for Civil Security and Emergency Preparedness.
The ICRC had the lead role in mine/UXO incidents data collection in Kosovo for the last three years. In 2001, the ICRC has documented 30 Mine/UXO incidents, where 9 people were killed and 30 injured. Since the beginning of this year, 6 incidents have been reported in which 2 people have been killed and 9 injured. The ICRC is now transmitting its expertise - gained in Kosovo and elsewhere - to the IPH.
This transfer of responsibilities is part of the ICRC's willingness and commitment to build capacities within Kosovo institutions. It comes along with the hand-over of responsibilities from the United Nations Mine Action Centre to various local institutions.
In addition, the ICRC is continuing its Mine Awareness programmes in Kosovo with the aim of reducing the number of incidents caused by remnants of the conflict. In this respect, it has developed a community based approach. This approach focuses on the involvement of affected communities and the training of village representatives and Red Cross volunteer s for the gathering of information about the Mine/UXO situation. The ICRC - through a network of trained field officers and volunteers - is therefore continuing to play an interface role between affected communities and other Mine Action actors in Kosovo, at a time when most international organisations involved in Mine Action have withdrawn