KABUL (TCA) — The Embassy of Japan in Kabul on March 12 signed agreements with two Afghan companies to start demining areas in Panjshir and Parwan provinces of Afghanistan, TOLOnews reported.
The embassy will provide over $1 million USD to the companies to fund the project and to establish a veterinary center in Paktia.
Officials said the demining project aims to clear over 1.5 million square meters of land.
“We hope that our partners spend the money properly to address Afghanistan people’s challenges,” the Embassy of Japan’s charge d’affaires Keiichi Hara said.
Officials from the Afghan Directorate for Mine Action Coordination (DMAC) said clearing of agricultural fields and residential areas of landmines will address people’s problems and will also help to increase farming which will in turn create jobs.
“The successful implementation of these projects will enhance security and development and will enable government to implement its projects properly in these areas,” Mohammad Hamid Wardak, head of the mining action directorate said.
“For the implementation of the new projects, we will appoint a few teams in Parwan and Panjshir and will clear over 850,000 square meters of land from mines and we will provide awareness programs to thousands of people about the dangers of mines,” Fazel Karim Fazel, head of Organization for Mine Clearance and Afghan Rehabilitation (OMAR) said.
Meanwhile the head of the livestock department at the Afghan ministry of agriculture, irrigation and livestock said Japan’s continued support will have a significant result on the local agriculture and livestock sectors.
“Activities of mining action organizations in the country not only save people’s life, but also preserve the life of animals that mostly face danger because of mines. By clearing fields from mines, more land will become available to farmers for cultivation,” the head of the livestock department Jahangir Meyakhil said.
Japan is a key donor country to Afghanistan and according to its embassy in Kabul, it has provided over $6 billion to Afghanistan since 2001.