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Minister: Iran ready to offer demining expertise without any political motivation

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Tehran, March 31, IRNA -- Minister of Defense and Logistics of Armed Forces, Brigadier General Ahmad Vahidi, said on Sunday that the Islamic Republic of Iran is ready to offer its mine sweeping expertise on humanitarian ground without political considerations.

In a message on the occasion of International Day for Mine Awareness & Assistance in Mine Action (April 4), Vahidi said the mines and explosives, left over since the 1980-88 Iraqi-imposed war, are negative results of hostility among communities and governments.

He said mines and cluster munitions, characterized by failure to discriminate civilians and non-civilians, not only cause extreme pain for the military men but also civilians during war, leaving negative impact on the environment and human communities after the war ends.

Vahidi said that the Islamic Republic of Iran is among countries which has sustained hefty damage during the eight-year imposed war due to excessive use of mines and cluster bombs by Saddam's military forces.

'Besides more than 20 million mines, planted by Iraqi Baathist forces in five western provinces, there were about 20 million inactive shells and explosives left over in the battle zones since the war.'

Vahidi said in a message that inspired by the Islamic commands, while respecting human dignity, the Islamic Republic of Iran initiated mine sweeping operations at the mine-infested areas. Iran neutralized cluster ammunition and explosives remained since war, he said.

Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 1079127

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