High-Level Regional Meeting on " Enhancing Regional Cooperation and Resource Mobilization in ASEAN Mine/ERW Action"
On 12 December 2022, ARMAC hosted the High-Level Meeting on “Enhancing Regional Cooperation and Resource Mobilization in ASEAN Mine/ERW Action” in Siem Reap, Cambodia. The meeting was made possible by the generous support from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Government of the People’s Republic of China and follows from two technical working groups on this topic, hosted by ARMAC in 2021 and 2022.
The meeting was attended by high-ranking members of the diplomatic community and representatives from the National Mine Action Authorities of the affected-ASEAN Member States (AMS) and co-chaired by ARMAC Executive Director Mr. Prum Suonpraseth and Director/Counsellor Mr. Liu Zhijie of China PRC. The meeting provided a platform for AMS to propose new and innovative projects to a high-level international audience.
On 08 December 2022, the ASEAN Regional Mine Action Center (ARMAC) convened its 20th Steering Committee (SC) Meeting at the ARMAC Permanent Secretariat in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. H.E. Mr. Ung Rachana, in his capacity as 2022 Chair of ARMAC Steering Committee led the discussions. ARMAC Chair thanked SC and ARMAC Permanent Secretariat for the cooperation and efforts extended during Cambodia’s chairmanship. During the meeting, ARMAC Executive Director Mr. Prum Suonpraseth reported on the accomplishments made during the year, as well as remaining deliverables for the year. During the meeting, SC members took note with appreciations of the achievements made by ARMAC since its establishment, and approved the proposed 2023 budget and the workplan.
In his closing remarks, outgoing ARMAC Chair conveyed his appreciation to all SC Members for their excellent cooperation and support during Cambodia’s Chairmanship. The meeting also welcomed the incoming ARMAC Chair H.E. Mr. Sudirman Haseng, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Indonesia from the Government of Indonesia who will assume the chairmanship effective 1 January 2023.
The meeting was attended by 27 representatives from the ASEAN Capitals and Embassies in Cambodia. This was the last meeting in 2022 under Cambodia’s Chairmanship.
ARMAC Regional Consultative Meeting Deliberated the establishment of victim assistance network in the ASEAN region
ARMAC Regional Consultative Meeting Deliberated the establishment of victim assistance network in the ASEAN region
5 December 2022, Bali, Indonesia. Under the project “Enhance Victim Assistance Programme in the ASEAN Member States”, the ASEAN Regional Mine Action Center (ARMAC) organized the Regional Consultative Meeting to promote the establishment of a Regional Victim Assistance Network.
The meeting collected and synthesized inputs from ASEAN Member States’ (AMSs) representatives, and relevant stakeholders such as the ASEAN-Korea Cooperation Fund, Humanity and Inclusion. Outputs from the discussion revealed that having the regional network in place as a central point to link related stakeholders collaborating on victim assistance services is essential and will be beneficial to explosive ordnance victim services providers. Stakeholders can use the network as a platform to learn, share knowledges and exchange best practices. Moreover, it is hoped that the network will continue to enhance the collaboration among explosive ordnance affected and non-affected countries to support one another as they improve victim assistance services.
The one-day intensive meeting was led by Mr. Prum Suonpraseth, Executive Director ASEAN Regional Mine Action Center. Guests of honor were H.E. Mr. Yeap Samnang, Ambassador / Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Cambodia to ASEAN and H.E. Mr. Kwon Hee-seog, Ambassador of the Mission of the Republic of Korea to ASEAN delivered the Remarks. A total of 38 representatives from the ten ASEAN Member States, international and national organizations participated in the meeting.
Psychosocial Support Training (2nd Batch), Siem Reap, Cambodia
14 to 18 November 2022 – Psychosocial Support Training (2nd Batch), Siem Reap, Cambodia
ASEAN Regional Mine Action Center (ARMAC) in collaboration with the Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority (CMAA) and Singapore Health Services (SingHealth) with generous funding support from the ASEAN-Korean Cooperation Fund, ARMAC’s Victim Assistance (VA) Project hosted the first in-person training on Psychosocial Supports (2nd Batch). The training was primarily targeted for community leaders and volunteers from national non-profit organization and foundation including Cambodian Mine Victim Information System (CMVIS), Volunteer Survivors Network, Physical Rehabilitation Center, and Cambodian Red Cross. The aim of the training is to enhance the skills on psychosocial support for aforementioned groups to enable them to provide psychosocial supports to landmines/Explosive Remnants of War-ERW victims at their communities. The trainees were introduced to series of topics covering psychiatric diagnosis, anxiety disorders, psychosocial impact of landmines and basic ground techniques, psychological first aid, posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, caring for the self, alcohol and drug abuse, somatic symptom, suicide and deliberated self-harm. The trainees felt grateful to undertake this training as the provided skills, for example, basic ground techniques and care to the self, can be applied not only to themselves when encountering trauma and stress but also to the Victims. The total number of trainees was 78 persons and many of them express their interest in upgrading their skills to become the Psychosocial Support Trainers, which is planned to be held in late 2023. Dr. Evelyn Boon, Prof. Leslie Lim and Dr. Cecilia Kwok, psychologist and psychiatrist experts, led a five-day Psychosocial Support Training.
Validation Workshop: Monitoring and Evaluation of Gender Equality and Inclusion in Mine Action
The ASEAN Regional Mine Action Center (ARMAC) organized a Study Validation Workshop: Monitoring and Evaluation of Gender Equality and Inclusion in Mine Action on 28-29 November at Sunway Hotel Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The workshop also presented ongoing progress on the development and validated the findings of an upcoming study on the mine action sector’s approach towards monitoring and evaluation of gender and diversity across ASEAN countries mine action programmes. The workshop was organized to ensure that findings and recommendations presented in the draft version of the study are fit for the purpose of supporting mine action entities in their efforts to enhance gender equality and inclusion.
The Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD) was commissioned to develop and write the study. The workshop is one of the deliverables under the project “Strengthen Gender Equality and Empowerment in Mine Action in the Mine/ETW affected ASEAN Member States” which is funded by the Government of Italy through the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (Agenzia Italiana per la Cooperazione allo Sviluppo).
Over 30 participants from national mine action authorities, national and international demining operators attended the hybrid event.
Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority commemorates its 30-year anniversary
The ASEAN Regional Mine Action Center (ARMAC) joined the Cambodian Mine Action and Victim Assistance Authority (CMAA) as it commemorates its 30-year anniversary in demining efforts in the country. The 2-day event which is held from 21 November to 22 November at Koh Pich Convention and Exhibition Centre featured displays on demining progress and achievements to date, as well as materials, machinery and equipment, demonstrations of manual demining as well as the use of mine detection systems, and detection of mines and explosives by animals such as dogs and rats. Senior Minister and CMAA First Vice President Ly Thuch delivered the opening remarks where he reiterated the significant contribution of development partners, national and international operators and all stakeholders over the past 30 years to the government’s mission to clear the Kingdom of landmines and address the impacts of Cambodia’s wars of decades past. Daniel Craig, UN’s global advocate for the elimination of landmines and unexploded ordnance also issued a statement noting that more than one million Cambodians still live in areas where they are at risk due to landmines.
His Excellency and Cambodia Prime Minister Hun Sen is expected to deliver the closing remarks later today.
The Round Table Discussion on Women, Peace and Security
On 13 November 2022, ARMAC Executive Director, Mr. Prum Suonpraseth attended the Round Table Discussion on Women, Peace and Security hosted by the Embassy of Canada with the honorable presence of His Honorable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada.
The event gathered key stakeholders in the humanitarian mine action in Cambodia and the region as represented by ARMAC, all of whom actively involved in promoting more leadership roles for women in the sector.
Environmental Impact Management in Mine Action Workshop
Today ARMAC, together with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), hosted Humanitarian Mine Action (HMA) Organisations from around the ASEAN region in the Environmental Impact Management in Mine Action Workshop – the first of its kind in the region. The workshop is being held in Siem Reap over two days, and brings together international experts and practitioners to share best practices to ensure HMA actors take all reasonable steps to reduce the environmental impact of their activities. In opening the workshop, H.E. Ung Rachana, Chairman of the Steering Committee of ARMAC, underscored the importance of environmental management consideration, and one which would “require collective efforts to promote policy dialogue, research, capacity building, and scaling up and replicating of good practices across the ASEAN region”.
Second Technical Working Group Meeting for the Project, "Enhancing Regional Cooperation and Resource Mobilization Capacity in Mine/ERW in ASEAN"
On 13 and 14 September, the ASEAN Regional Mine Action Center with funding from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Government of the People’s Republic of China organized the Second Technical Working Group Meeting for the Project, “Enhancing Regional Cooperation and Resource Mobilization Capacity in Mine/ERW in ASEAN”. The Meeting showcased examples of projects demonstrating cross-sectoral collaboration, regional cooperation, as well as innovative financing models which could be adopted for the mine action sector. The last day of the meeting was spent to developing draft proposals for submission to the High-Level Regional Meeting. A total of 35 participants attended the meeting.
On 8 September 2022, the ASEAN Regional Mine Action Center (ARMAC) convened its 19th Steering Committee (SC) Meeting, under the Cambodian Chairmanship. The Meeting presented key accomplishments in the first and second quarters of the year, and discussed outstanding issues namely, the findings and recommendations of the Mid-Term Review conducted by an independent evaluator and the outcome of the stakeholders’ workshops in the affected member states, financial sustainability of ARMAC, financial and in-kind contributions to-date, and project steering committee mechanism in line with ASEAN Project Management Manual.
H.E. Mr. Ung Rachana, ARMAC Chair and Undersecretary of State of Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Cambodia, led the meeting. The meeting was attended by over 26 representatives from the 10 ASEAN Member States in person and virtually.