The UNITED24 platform is launching the Humanitarian Demining direction to raise funds for the demining of Ukrainian land. This was announced today by President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy during the UNITED24 Summit.
Today, Ukraine is one of the most heavily mined countries in the world. Due to russia's full-scale invasion, about a third of the country's territory is currently mined. According to preliminary expert estimates, 10% of agricultural land is unusable. This means a constant threat to human lives, huge losses for the economy and decades of demining and soil restoration. The World Bank estimates that the full range of humanitarian demining in Ukraine will cost USD 37.4 billion.
Accelerating the clearance of Ukrainian territories from the consequences of the russian occupation is one of the most important challenges of our time. That is why the UNITED24 platform is launching a separate Humanitarian Demining initiative. All funds raised will be transferred to a special account opened by the Ministry of Economy.
"174,000 square kilometres in Ukraine are contaminated with explosives. More than half of the countries in the world have a smaller area. We need to make these territories safe for life. Otherwise, they face depopulation and decline. And we have to do it immediately, because people are dying. For example, a few days ago, two tractor drivers were killed in a field in the Kharkiv region. Ukraine currently has 10 machines and 2,000 sappers. This is definitely not enough to continue clearing agricultural land," said Yuliia Svyrydenko, First Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine and Minister of Economy of Ukraine.
Last year, simultaneously with the launch of the UNITED24 platform, a fundraising campaign was launched for Defence and Demining direction. In particular, this allowed us to purchase the first Armtrac 400 in Ukraine. This is the largest and most efficient demining vehicle in its class, worth more than USD 18 million. It was put into operation in Kharkiv region in October 2022. It is currently working in Kherson region to clear agricultural land.