In the ceremony of the 200 years of the Liberation Campaign, carried out in the Flags square of the governorship of the department of Huila, the National Army handed over six municipalities more free of suspicion of antipersonnel mines.
With the declaration of Garzón, Isnos, La Plata, Argentina, Rivera and San Agustín, the department reaches eight municipalities free of contamination of explosive devices, because the previous year, Huila received the municipalities of Gigante and Suaza.
4,797,000 square meters were presented after six months of work by the Non-Technical Studies teams of the Humanitarian Demining Engineers Battalion No. 5.
The demining tasks were carried out by visiting the communities from house to house and through security meetings where hamlets were prioritized for further investigation.
The humanitarian demining operations that are being carried out since 2017, in 18 municipalities of that region, have led to estimate that more than 1,700,000 square meters of the department are contaminated, a figure that makes the department to occupy nationally the eleventh place in most hit areas.
This is how currently the soldiers cleared with manual demining the municipalities of Tello, Baraya, Colombia and Neiva, which must be intervened centimeter by centimeter by the mine clearance specialists.
Lieutenant Colonel Jhon Fredy Correa González, commander of the Demining Battalion n. ° 5, reported that, "today more than 365,000 inhabitants of Huila are directly and indirectly benefited, in turn, after this work more than 2,000 requests for land restitution have been sue by the inhabitants who had their properties with contamination of explosive devices; the work will continue until we liberate the entire department."
From 2018 to date, with manual demining, military have managed to clean 258,499 square meters, destroying 35 explosive devices in the department that reports 248 victims of antipersonnel mines.
The work of the mine clearance specialists is carried out in areas consolidated by soldiers of the Ninth Brigade attached to the Fifth Division.
Source: Humanitarian Demining Brigade