SafeLane has used surveying techniques and mine detection dogs to minimise the risks of explosive remnants of war in Albania.
After the breakup of Yugoslavia (1991 – 1992), Albania was extensively contaminated by explosive remnants of war. It was further affected by unexploded ordnance contamination following the year-long Kosovo War in 1998 – 1999.
During the Kosovo War, forces of the former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia laid minefields along the northeastern border of Albania. It took one year to lay the mines, and nine years to conduct a clearance operation to safely recover the land.
The landmine contamination impacted the development and financial stabilisation of the newly independent Albania.
Albania’s conflict history
Albania’s 20th century conflict history was complex and fuelled by ethnic tensions and opposing societal structures. These tensions resulted in numerous wars including:
- First Balkan War (1912 – 1913) where Albania gained independence from the Ottoman empire
- Second Balkan War (1913) where Albania was caught in territory division disputes
- WWI (1914 – 1918) which resulted in the collapse of the new state of Albania
After WWI Albania was split and occupied by Italian, Greek, French, and Serbian military forces.
Conflict in Albania continued during WWII when it was occupied and absorbed into Italy; then in 1945 Albania once again achieved independence.
However, the legacy of the Second World War for Albania was uncertainty. Its citizens faced an ever-changing political landscape, evolving democratic relationships and severe economic hardship.
Then, during the Kosovo War, Albania was not only mined but shelled heavily.
Albania is still affected by explosive remnants of war such as artillery shells, grenades, mortars, and abandoned explosive ordnance.
SafeLane is ready to rapidly deploy
Unexploded ordnance is all too often a legacy of conflict that, until comprehensively addressed, impacts development and impedes economic growth.
With the support of international humanitarian and commercial explosive threat mitigation companies, including SafeLane Global, the Albanian Mines and Munitions Coordination Office has made great progress towards clearing its unexploded ordnance problem.
For example, in October 2009 Albania was declared mine-free.
SafeLane surveyed land and deployed mine detection dogs to support clearance operations and is proud to have helped minimise risk for local communities.