Paying it Forward: Training A New Generation of Landmine Clearance Leaders
Director Lawrence and Deemah Nasser Pose for a Photo [State Dept. Photo]

About the Author: Jim Lawrence is the Director of the Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement in the Department’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs.

Since 1993, the United States has provided nearly $2 billion in aid and technical support to help more than 80 countries safely clear landmines and other explosive remnants of war, such as unexploded artillery shells, bombs, and ammunition. However, these hidden hazards can linger for decades, making it essential to build local expertise in partner nations that can take control of this serious humanitarian challenge over the long term.

That’s why I was particularly proud to recently spend time with a group of men and women from 14 countries as they completed training sponsored by our office that will give them the know-how they need to lead their countries’ efforts not only to make local communities safer, but also to “pay it forward” by helping other countries struggling to recover from conflict.

The 16 students hailed from Afghanistan, Azerbaijan,… more »

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