Ukrainian Women Train to Identify and Clear Landmines
Learning to identify and defuse explosives is something Anastasiia Minchukova never thought she would have to do as an English teacher in Ukraine.
But Russia's invasion took Minchukova, 20, and five other women to Kosovo, where they are attending a course in clearing landmines and other dangers that may remain hidden across their country once the conflict ends.
The 18-day training camp takes place in the western town of Peja, where a company called Praedium Consulting Malta regularly offers courses for job-seekers, firms working in former war zones, humanitarian organizations and government agencies.
While it is impossible to know how much unexploded ordnance there is in Ukraine at the moment, the aftermaths of other conflicts suggest the problem will be huge.
ブランドスーパーコピー the invasion, Russian forces have bombed cities and towns across Ukraine, reducing many to rubble.
With Ukrainian men from 18 to 60 years old banned from leaving their country and most engaged in defending it, the women wanted to help any way they could despite the risks involved.
"It's dangerous all over Ukraine, even if you are in a relatively safe region," said Minchukova, who is from central Ukraine.
Another Ukrainian student, Yuliia Katelik, 38, took her three children to safety in Poland early in the war. She went back to Ukraine and then joined the training camp to help make sure it's safe for her children when they return home to the eastern city of Kramatorsk.
Katelik said her only wish is to be with her family again and see "the end of this nightmare." Knowing how to spot booby traps that could destroy their lives again is a necessary skill, she said.
The Kosovo training center plans to work with more groups of Ukrainian women, both in Peja and in Ukraine.
According to the International Committee of the Red Cross, unexploded ordnance kills and injures thousands of civilians every year, even after active conflict has ended.
Mine Action Review has reported that 56 countries were contaminated with unexploded ordnance as of October 2021. The problem is worst in countries such as Afghanistan, Cambodia and Iraq, followed by Angola, Bosnia, Thailand, Turkey and Yemen.