OVERVIEW of Mine Victim Assistance
Assistance to victims of mines/ERW is a major component of mine action. Mine Victim Assistance (MVA) is undertaken using three-tiered definition of mines/ERW victims, which includes individuals that are directly affected by mines, their families, and mine-affected communities.
The growth in awareness of the mines/ERW problem led to a broader understanding of the depth of the problem and the importance of addressing the needs of mines/ERW victims. The identified areas concerning mine victims include:
- Emergency medical care, amputation surgery and post-operation care, which is taken care of by the Ministry of Social Affairs, the Ministry of Health and the National Steering Committee on MVA;
- Physical rehabilitation and prosthetics, wheelchairs and crutches;
- Assistance for non-amputee mine victims (blindness, deafness, etc.);
- Psychological rehabilitation;
- Returning victims to economic productivity, vocational training etc.
- Victims need assessment surveys and a continuous update of the victims’ database.
- Advocacy of the rights of the Victims and support of the process of the international convention on their rights.
The MVA Department aims to:
- Support mines /ERW survivors.
- Survey and update victims database continuously: data on mines/ERW victims is collected through surveys then updated and entered into IMSMANG database to provide a comprehensive overview of mine-related victims in Lebanon.
- Advocate the rights of the Victims and support the process of the international convention on their rights.
The MVA plan has been developed in line with the respective terms of related international treaties. In September 2011, the LMAC presented the Lebanese “2011-2020 National Mine Action Strategy” that clearly stated that the ultimate goal is to have:
“the rights of victims fulfilled; all this as per the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) obligations, in the spirit of the Mine Ban Treaty (MBT), and in accordance with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD)”.
Furthermore, the Lebanese Parliament passed in May 2000 The national law 220/2000 “Access and Rights of the People with Disability” which is a comprehensive law that includes all sectors. It addresses the rights of people with disabilities to proper education, rehabilitation services, employment, medical services, sports and access to public transport and other facilities. The law has yet to be comprehensively put into practice.
Lebanon also signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) in 2007 but it has not yet been ratified. The UNCRPD is an international law that provides guidance to countries on how to meet the human rights of persons with disabilities.