Colombia to train Ukrainian army in demining

Colombian Defense Minister Diego Molano stands at the start of a special agent as a measure to increase security and fight criminal groups on the border between Colombia and Venezuela, at a military base in Arauca, Colombia February 12, 2022 REUTERS/Nathalia Angarita/File Photo

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BOGOTA, May 23 (Reuters) – A team of Colombian soldiers will travel to Europe to train their Ukrainian counterparts in demining techniques, the South American defense minister said on Monday.

Colombia’s nearly 60 years of internal conflict between armed forces, left-wing rebels, right-wing paramilitaries and drug cartels have made it one of the worst-mined countries in the world, according to the United Nations. Landmines have killed 2,342 people in Colombia and injured nearly 10,000 since 1990, according to the government.

Russian soldiers and Ukrainian authorities have both said they will clear landmines from various locations in Ukraine as part of the ongoing invasion Russia launched in February. Read more

Experts from Colombia, which is a NATO partner, were invited to conduct the training by the United States, Colombian Defense Minister Diego Molano said in a statement.

“This training will be delivered by 11 military engineers who will travel to a NATO member country neighboring Ukraine,” Molano said.

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Reporting by Luis Jaime Acosta; Written by Julia Symmes Cobb; Editing by Will Dunham

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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