The landmine clearing work in LTTE controlled areas is currently being funded solely by the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation, said Mr Yogan. He noted that elsewhere in the world, such projects received support from United Nations agencies.
"The lack of even basic equipments means my team has to ignore large areas, focusing only on the areas identified for resettlement by refugees," Mr Yogan noted.
An American team recently sent to carry out mine clearance has so far only worked in parts of Sarasalai where the Sri Lanka army is based and uninhabited by civilians. The team, still awaiting the arrival of some their equipment, had recovered just 64 anti-personnel mines the Colombo-based Sudaroli reported last week.
The Humanitarian Landmine Clearance Section has so far deactivated more than 134,000 mines, shells and other explosives in various areas across the north and east.
Despite the risk, people have resettled in some areas, such as Paappamottai, Periyamadu, Kaarisuttan, Paalampitty, Mullikkulam, Iranai Illuppaikulam and Pallamadu even though they are yet to be cleared. Many of these areas remain uncleared due to the lack of funds, Mr Yogan points out.
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