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UNMAS Official Says It Could Take 14 Years To Cleanup The Debris Of War-Ravaged Gaza




In a recent briefing, a senior official of UNMAS (United Nations Mine Action Service) said it could take up to 14 years to clean up the aftermath of the Israel-Hamas conflict in the Gaza Strip.


Pehr Lodhammar, who has previously worked on mine cleanup programs, especially in Iraq, gave an estimation of how long it could take to get rid of the debris scattered across Gaza and move back to normalcy.


According to Lodhammar’s estimation, around 37 million tons of debris, including unexploded ordnance, lie across the coastal area. “We know that typically there’s a failure rate of at least 10% of land service ammunition that is being fired and fails to function,” he said in the briefing.


Around 65% of residential buildings in Gaza have been flattened, contributing to the 37 million tons or 300 kg per square meter of debris. Due to the existence of unexploded mines under the rubble, it has become quite an exponential task to start the cleanup.


The UNMAS official gave a hypothetical explanation:” It would require 100 trucks per day for at least 14 years.” That’s close to 750,000 hours of work days.


The statistics given by UNMAS are based on the current situation. Based on the situation in Gaza, the number of casualties can go higher, making the cleanup even more difficult than it already is. Since the Oct.7 attack by Hamas, the Israeli military has killed at least 34,000 Palestinians while forcing 2 million civilians to be displaced. The horror of the war has raised alarm among world leaders.

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