#Migrants #IOM #Balkan #route #risk #mines
Migrants attempting to cross Western Europe via the so-called Balkan route face the risks of drowning, abuse, exploitation and gender-based violence but also the danger of jumping on mines scattered throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina. This is the alarm raised by the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
“Very few migrants know that the land here is littered with mines and even if informed of this danger they do not know where to look,” said Rajko Živak, one of the instructors who works with IOM to raise awareness of the problem for migrants crossing remote areas and abandoned of the country. For this reason, the organization has recently concluded a series of training sessions in temporary reception centers, which host about 3,400 migrants in the Balkan country from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Syria, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, sub-Saharan Africa and North Africa. But it is known that as many migrants remain outside the official centers and therefore it is impossible to inform them of the danger they run.
“We showed the migrants welcomed in the camps how mines are, how well hidden and subtle they can be – added the IOM representative – and we explained to them that mines are a permanent danger, even years after they were laid in the ground. “.
The Mine Action Center of Bosnia and Herzegovina estimates that more than 180,000 unexploded mines have been left in the ground since the wars of the 1990s.