The process of clearing the Falkland Islands of the mines left behind by Argentina in 1982 continues slowly but surely.
Another area of Stanley Common has been signed off with 3,700,000 sq m. of land cleared by 17 Zimbabwean deminers under the control of BACTEC specialists, assisted by good weather. This clearance exceeds that originally planned although 4 areas within the common remain fenced off and will be dealt with as part of a future project.
The Programme Manager, Robin Swanson told the Penguin News; “BACTEC have applied all the right quality measures during this contract so the community should have absolute confidence in their work. They have worked very hard and achieved almost double the minimum they were contracted to do. This phase alone will release about 17% of the area currently prohibited by minefield fences and unavailable for social use across the islands”.
Large areas of the Falkland Islands remain in a dangerous condition due to the mass use of mines by Argentina following its invasion of the British archipelago in April, 1982 and the realisation that the British Government was resolved to regain the Islands. This was achieved after 74 days of conflict with the loss of nearly 1000 lives.
Argentina has never assisted the United Kingdom in the demining process.