United States Declares Central America Area Free of Land Mines
By Dialogo January 09, 2012
A U.S. State Department report has declared Central America a region free of land mines. According to the annual report To Walk the Earth in Safety, made public by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Central America is the first area of the world to be free of armaments of this kind.
According to the official statement, thousands of land mines and unexploded munitions remain buried in former conflict zones throughout the world, making it unsafe and unusable and causing 4,000 deaths a year.
In the Central American region, mines were left buried following the internal armed conflicts in Guatemala, El Salvador, and Nicaragua, which took place from the mid-1960s to the early 1990s.
Clinton said that the annual number of victims “is still an unacceptably high figure,” but she noted, “Over the last decade, we have helped decrease the worldwide number of landmine casualties from around 15,000 to 20,000 annually to approximately 4,000 in each of the last two years.”