The recent trends in mine action operations have seen more national authorities and mine action operators faced with Explosive Ordnance contamination in urban population centres. Much of the problem stems from contamination that has been improvised. The clearance of any Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) has, in may contexts been predominantly the role of the security services, and all technical and reference materials produced have been restricted and not easily available to national authorities for consideration when drafting national standards and developing SOPs and training material. With the publication of the new IMAS that includes IED Disposal (including competencies), Building Clearance and Threat Analysis and Threat Assessment, there remains a need to increase technical awareness of the challenges, to support IMAS implementation and NMAS production.
The establishment of clear and achievable clearance parameters is one of the most contentious issues and would ensure the level of assurance an operator must provide and allow for suitable QM processes to take place. The knowledge and skills required of IED search or disposal practitioner would take weeks or months to impart to a student and are beyond the scope of the course. Further in depth technical guidance to assist in establishing NMAS, SOP’s and training is being produced by the Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD) and many countries have already been conducting operations and requesting further guidance.
The GICHD and the Lebanon Mine Action Center (LMAC), are organising, in the context of the Arab Regional Cooperation Programme (ARCP), a Regional Threat Assessment and Building Search Awareness course, that will take place from 16 to 20 September at the Regional School for Humanitarian Demining in Lebanon (RSHDL). The Training course is dedicated only to countries facing IED and urban contamination challenges and will be held in both Arabic and English.
The regional awareness course is co-funded by Finland, the German Federal Foreign Office, and Switzerland.
To impart knowledge to senior NMAA staff including QC personnel for them to identify potential knowledge or skills gaps, while in the immediate future assist in the implementation of the new IMAS guidance on Threat Assessment, IEDD and the search phase of Building Clearance.
The course will focus on the threat assessment process, using building clearance planning and procedures as a vehicle to support the transfer of knowledge. Theoretical and practical scenarios will be used, where options for clearance parameters, procedures and QM processes in line with IMAS can be considered. As there remains many aspects of urban clearance that require guidance, the course will also provide a forum for NMAA’s to share experiences, challenges and solutions to EO contamination in urban areas. This is also an opportunity
to engage in these discussions and capture information to further the research for the urban operations project.
The Training Course duration is 5 days with the 15 September arrival day and 20 or 21 September 2019 departure day, depending on flight availability.
Applicants must be from a mine action authority from the MENA region with IED and urban contamination challenges and from the senior staff or QC section of that organisation and a maximum of 4 personnel will be approved per authority, subject to review.
The GICHD and LMAC will provide necessary administration and logistic support for all the confirmed participants, including the visa application support. A support letter from the Directors of the programmes must be attached to the application. For the confirmed participants, valid health insurance coverage in Lebanon for the period of stay, and a colour passport photograph should be attached to the application form.
GICHD will be covering the cost of the Training Course. This includes accommodation within RSHDL - Hammana, meals, coffee breaks and classroom materials. Transfer to and from Beirut airport is supported by LMAC/RSHDL.
The GICHD offers sponsorships for 4 representatives from each country that does not have the financial means to cover their participation and if the need is justified. The GICHD will provide support in the form of air tickets.