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September 22, 2012 (TSR) – The Permanent Observer of Norway to the OAS, Ambassador Wegger Christian Strommen, made the donation to OAS Secretary General Jose Miguel Insulza during a brief ceremony at the organization headquarters in Washington.
Insulza thanked Ambassador Strommen for the donation and noted that Norway has been a Permanent Observer to the OAS since 2000, ”but its commitment to the Americas and to OAS programs began much earlier, with contributions of more than 12 million dollars to the OAS program for Comprehensive Action against Antipersonnel Mines (AICMA),“ developed by the organization.
The OAS official underlined that the country has been one of the “most important and consistent donors to this program and its support was vital to the successful completion of all demining operations in Central America, marked by the completion of the program in Nicaragua in 2010.”
In Ecuador and Peru, “Norway has made significant contributions since 2008 that have allowed both governments to make huge advances in the speed and efficiency of their demining efforts.” The new contribution will help both countries to continue “to assume greater ownership and control over their demining programs” that are expected to be concluded in 2017.
“The active participation of our Permanent Observers reminds us daily of the importance of the work that we do and of our links to the rest of the world,” concluded the Secretary General.
The donation will be channelled through AICMA and is intended to provide assistance to the governments of Peru and Ecuador in humanitarian demining plans. It will also support the implementation of measures to reduce mine accidents.
The Peruvian Centre for Action against Antipersonnel Mines, CONTRAMINAS, will be responsible for overseeing education campaigns against landmines in the Amazonas department for affected communities, while the National Demining Centre of Ecuador, CENDESMI, will coordinate prevention education in communities affected by mines in that country.