Somali Demining Action Group
Action Group (SDAG) aims to eradicate anti-personnel landmines in
Central and south Somalia. Statistics are provided for mine casualties
in central and south Somalia.
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by Dr. Omar
Mohamed, Somali Demining Action Group
here to view casualty data on Somalia
of Somali Demining Action Group (SDAG)
SDAG is a non-governmental organization (NGO) working
and campaigning to eradicate AP landmine problems in central and south Somalia. SDAG was established in 1992 to implement
mine clearance and mine risk education activities in central and south
Somalia. SDAG is staffed entirely by Somali nationals and the Somali
Diaspora. In its first two years of operation, SDAG focused on sending
special training instructors to high-priority mined areas to provide
Somali civil society with mine risk education. SDAG is working with
the Transitional National Government (TNG) in Mogadishu and Bay,
Bakool, and Upper Geddo regions of central Somalia.
Casualties and Survivor Assistance in Somalia
Landmine incidents continue, albeit often unreported.
According to the U.S. Department of State, reporting on events in
2000: “On January 20th in the Hiran region, a landmine
exploded, killing at least six persons. On January 30th in the Hiran
region, landmines and gun battles killed 21 persons. On January 30th
near El Ali, five escorts of a food convoy were killed when their
vehicle hit a mine. Also on January 30th, an aid convoy hit a landmine
while crossing the Shabelle River for the Bakool Region. The Abgal
clan reportedly planted the landmine; 10 persons were killed and eight
others injured. On February 5th, landmines destroyed three
‘technicals,’ combat vehicles, belonging to the Islamic Court militias
near the village of Buulo Warbo, west of Qoryoley, Lower Shabelle. The
explosions killed three persons and injured five others.” In July
2001, it was reported that three people lost their legs and a baby
girl was killed in a mine incident on the road between Kismayo and
In northeast Somalia, according to the director of
Garowe Hospital, Dr. Mohammed Hussein Arabi, since the end of the
conflict, trauma cases have fallen considerably, and more recently, most
cases have been type C, caused by handling UXO. According to UNDP
Somalia, hospital statistics reported “accidents,” which include mine
injuries among others, as 14 percent of all fatalities in the past
year . During that year, there were 101 mine incidents in
northeast Somalia, of which 40 percent resulted in human fatalities.
In central Somalia, statistics are available for the
Bay and Bakool regions. In the Bay region, between 1995 and 2000, 1,281
people were killed by mines, including 38 in 2000, a significant
decrease from previous years when casualties numbered in the hundreds.
A total of 1,729 were reported injured by mines between 1995 and 2000,
including 49 in 2000, another significant decrease from previous years,
when casualties numbered in the hundreds.
In the Bakool region, 897 people were killed by mines
between 1995 and 2000, including 26 in 2000. Between 1995 and 2000,
450 people were injured, including 34 people in the year 2000.
In south Somalia, Mogadishu Hospital reopened in June
2000 and has 55 beds available, all for emergency surgical cases, with
technical support provided by the International Committee of the Red
In the week of March 10–16, 2001, the hospital received
70 patients, of which 33 were “weapon wounded and 32 non-weapons
wounded and two were other wounds.” Thirteen of the patients died.
Casualties and Survivor Assistance in Somaliland
Landmine Monitor learned that in 2000, regional mine
officers were instructed to compile more systematic incident reports.
According to statistics received from the Somali Mine Action Center (SMAC) in July 2001, in calendar
year 2000, there were 107 landmine/UXO casualties in Somaliland,
including 73 males and 34 females, of whom 60 were children and 47
were adults. Forty-eight casualties resulted from anti-personnel mines, 48 from
anti-tank mines, and 32 from UXO.
Two decades of conflict and instability devastated
Somaliland’s health care and social services infrastructure. Two NGOs
based in Hargeisa provide some assistance to landmine survivors: the
Somaliland Red Crescent Society and Handicap International France.
Between 1993 and December 1999, the Somaliland Red Crescent Society
rehabilitation center provided prostheses to 1,082 patients, of which
382 were mine victims.
International (HI) provides prostheses, crutches. and wheelchairs and
runs a physiotherapy clinic for amputees and other disabled people. HI
is also involved in projects assisting the social reintegration of the
disabled, including mine survivors.
Dr. Omar Mohamed
901 Lawrence Avenue West
Toronto On, M6A 1C3
Tel: (416) 789-7011 Ext. 276
Fax: (416) 789-3951