STANLEY, Falkland Islands – On 14 June 1982 as British Forces liberated the beleaguered small Falkland Islands population from Argentine occupation and the Islanders rejoiced as British democracy was restored, disturbing rumours began to circulate – Argentine soldiers had reportedly been observed laying vast numbers of mines in areas close to the town and beyond.
The Falkland Islands Demining project has scheduled another planned demolition next Friday, 18 May and has set out preparations in a release.
As Mercopress have reported in a series of articles over the past eight years, the Falkland Islands are slowly being cleared of the landmines laid by Argentine forces during the 1982 war. Last week this process reached a key milestone when Goose Green settlement, the site of a key battle in late May 1982, was announced as being mine-free.
DYNASAFE Bactec recently returned to the Falkland Islands to continue demining operations, namely the completion of Phase 5a by March 18. “The break of around 10 weeks has allowed us all to recharge our batteries to finish these remaining tasks,” said Project Manager Julius Unsung.
The BACTEC demining team was welcomed back to the Falkland Islands with a reception last Tuesday evening, hosted by the recently arrived Governor Nigel Phillips at Government House.
The British government has spent £ 16.604.385 in demining operations in the Falkland Islands since 2009. The information was confirmed by the Foreign Office following a request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
SINCE their deployment in October 2016 through to June 2017, the BACTEC teams have worked on 47 minefield areas from Fox Bay, Port Howard and Goose Green to the Stanley area. The team will now leave for three months before continuing the current phase.
Deminer Rodgers Mandava working to clear minefields in the Falkland Islands, was injured during an accident in a Moody Valley clearance operation on February 27, has recovered well from his injuries and work has resumed in the area, according to a report published by the Penguin News.
Project Manager for Dynasafe BACTEC Limited, Julius Unsung has notified that the next demolitions as part of the Falklands Demining project are planned for Thursday 9th February 2017 between 10am – 3pm.
Falkland Islands demining and ground clearance operations which this season took off in September are advancing rapidly and controlled explosions of ordnance has been announced for later this week. Thousands of antipersonnel and anti tank mines in marked perimeters remain the Falklands, a legacy of the retreating Argentine forces which invaded the Islands 33 years ago in 1982.