Japan to Support Humanitarian Demining Activities in Northern Sri Lanka


The Government of Japan has provided a total sum of US$ 647,887 (approx. Rs. 230 million) to the HALO Trust for humanitarian demining activities in the Northern Province of Sri Lanka. The grant contract was signed on 19th October 2022 at the Ambassador’s Residence in Colombo, between His Excellency Mr. MIZUKOSHI Hideaki, Ambassador of Japan and Mr. Stephen Hall, Programme Manager of the HALO Trust.

HALO commenced operations in Sri Lanka in 2002 with approximately 20% of its clearance activities accomplished through Japanese assistance. It is expected that this FY’s project would contribute to facilitating the efforts of the Government of Sri Lanka to make mine contaminated areas safe lands for internally displaced people and enhancing directly and indirectly 11,000 people’s livelihoods in Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu and Jaffna Districts.

Japan has been a major donor in the area of mine clearance in Sri Lanka since 2002, assisting all the four demining NGOs currently operating in Sri Lanka. More than US$ 42.7 million in assistance was rendered towards this cause through its Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Project (GGP).

This year, Japan and Sri Lanka mark the 70th Anniversary of the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations. Development of the conflict-affected regions is one of the priority areas in Japan’s official development assistance policy to Sri Lanka. The Government of Japan will continue to support the effort for the Government’s goal of achieving a ”Mine Free Sri Lanka”.

Commenting on the provision of this grant, Mr. Stephen Hall stated;

“The HALO Trust is very grateful to the Government of Japan for its continued trust and generous support – they are our longest-supporting donor. Twenty years of humanitarian assistance to clear landmines in Northern Sri Lanka has resulted in over seven square kilometers of land previously contaminated by explosive remnants of war being made safe. In the process, over 54,000 landmines and thousands of other explosive items have been safely destroyed and can now no longer cause harm, injury or death. Removing the threat posed by landmines and other explosives allows for the safe resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), and unlocks opportunities for socio-economic development and productive use and cultivation of land. Funding from Japan also provides a stable income and livelihood for hundreds of local women and men. The continued support from the Government of Japan to The HALO Trust and three other mine action operators is bringing the Government of Sri Lanka one step closer to towards meeting its Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Treaty obligations of clearing the country of all known mine and other explosive contamination by 1 June 2028”.