Explosive devices found at the cassava field in Xy commune. Photo: baoquangtri.vn
Right after receiving information from local residents, PeaceTrees' EOD team, in collaboration with the provincial border guard’s Thanh border station and the communal People’s Committee, conducted inspections at the cassava field.
The team found 75 Blu-24 bomblets and 220 warheads of various kinds. As most of the bomblets remained intact, posing a high risk of explosion, they were defused at the site. Meanwhile, the authorities safely moved the warheads to a warehouse for explosive materials.
A survey in 2017 by the Ministry of National Defence showed that nearly 82 percent of the area of Quang Tri, a fierce battlefield during the war, was contaminated with unexploded ordnances (UXOs). Nearly 8,540 local residents have been killed or injured by UXOs since 1975.
In Huong Hoa – a heavily UXO-polluted district, more than 1,150 people have been killed or injured in UXO accidents since 1975 – when the war ended.
In 1995, PeaceTrees Vietnam was the first international non-governmental organisation coming to the province to help address post-war consequences through UXO clearance, and support for UXO victims.
In August 2019, PeaceTrees' EOD teams cleared 345,221 sq. meters of land, finding and destroying 653 explosive remnants of war that will no longer have potential for harm. In addition, PeaceTrees provided 184 mine risk education sessions for 1,639 people living in Quang Tri./.