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Land mines : The silent killers in Syria war


According to recent estimates, more than five million Syrians live in areas that are heavily contaminated by unexploded devices, including more than two million children who are at risk of falling prey to explosive remnants of war, such as landmines, cluster munitions and other devices. 
Among the victims is Jamila Muhammad, 65, who remained in Syria even after several of her children and grandchildren fled to Turkey. Almost a year ago, in May 2015, she was out herding the family's small flock of sheep near al-Khalfatli, a small village near the Turkish border. "I bent down because I saw a pretty flower," Muhammad told Al Jazeera. "But under it was a mine."


Muhammad lost the lower part of her right leg in the explosion. She tried to get treatment in Syria, but eventually her son convinced her to go to Turkey to be fitted for a prosthetic limb. After several months of rehabilitation, she is still not used to her artificial leg, she said. Ateeq is one of the rare Syrian volunteers with professional experience in clearing explosive devices. After defecting from the army, he says he decided to use his expertise to protect civilians from the danger of unexploded devices. He founded the Syrian Centre for Awareness and Demining, where he trains small teams in mine clearance and risk education.







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