What would you do if you had to worry about landmines every time you went to the store, took a drive in the countryside or went to see your doctor?
That's the reality for millions of people in about 80 countries. With such large numbers of people affected by landmines in countries that may seem very far away, it's sometimes easy to forget about the problem.
Landmines may not be in your backyard, but they're in the backyards of people all over the world.
The United Nations is helping dozens of countries end the threat of landmines. You can help too by donating to have a minefield cleared.
The fight against landmines is a fight for the rights of people to live free from fear, in a safe environment conducive to development and peace.
The impact of landmines
Mines kill or injure thousands of people every year. And they rob whole communities of their livelihoods. In many countries, mines block people's access to roads, schools, health care, water supplies, jobs, and opportunities to get head. Read more about the experiences of individuals affected by land mines.
United Nations Mine Action Team
Under the overall coordination of the UN Mine Action Team, 13 separate UN agencies, programmes, departments and funds provide various “mine-action” services in 41 countries or territories.
Mine action is about more than just removing landmines from the ground, or “demining.” It includes a range of activities aimed at protecting people from danger, helping victims become self-sufficient and active members of their communities, advocating for a world free from the threat of landmines, and helping countries destroy stockpiled landmines, to ensure they may never be used by anyone.
Although the United Nations helps numerous countries face their landmine problems, the organization also helps address the larger problem of “explosive remnants of war,” which includes everything from cluster bombs that failed to detonate on impact but nevertheless remain volatile, to abandoned grenades, mortars and bombs that sometimes kill more people than antipersonnel mines.
The United Nations' work also extends beyond antipersonnel mines, helping remove antitank and antivehicle mines, which may also kill or injure civilians.