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In Pictures: Lebanon's land mine survivors
While unexploded land mines still pepper many areas of Lebanon, amputees are rebuilding their lives.
Last updated: 30 Jul 2014 10:32
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Beirut, Lebanon - A 15-year civil war and multiple conflicts with neighbours such as Israel have left Lebanon plagued by lasting danger.

Vast areas of the country - particularly in the south - are contaminated with unexploded land mines and cluster munitions, and thousands of citizens have suffered from life-changing injuries that can prevent them from supporting themselves and their families.

This, combined with the economic impacts caused by unexploded ordinance preventing people from working their land, has meant that one in five Lebanese citizens - 900,000 people - is now directly affected by this issue.

But many medical, economic, and social civil society initiatives provide rehabilitation to the survivors of these accidents, helping them become self-reliant again. The Jezzine Landmine Survivors Cooperative, for instance, was set up to help survivors start new businesses, such as honey and chicken farming.

The Lebanese Welfare Association for the Handicapped (LWAH) helps most survivors in their post-accident rehabilitation. It provides free medical therapy, and has also set up local branches to help with the social aspects of recovery.

Many of the survivors lose confidence after their injuries, and initiatives like the Lebanese Land Mine Survivors football team give them a place to come to terms with their injuries.

Through these rehabilitation efforts, those affected are given a chance to thrive once again despite the challenges they face.


/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

'Remaining land mine and cluster munition contamination is said to affect 565 towns and more than 900,000 people,' the Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor has found.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

The Mines Advisory Group (MAG) partakes in land mine and cluster munition clearance activities in Lebanon's ordinance-infested south. Wafaa Diab has worked for MAG for over a year helping rehabilitate Lebanon's land.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

Unexploded ordinance have a significant economic impact due to the restriction of movement and development of certain regions. Residents of rural areas can suffer the most as they cannot farm or use their lands. Here, the red poles identify the border of mined farmland.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

Bechara Aoun, 50, has been part of the Jezzine Landmine Survivors Cooperative since his injury in 2001. He used to be a baker, but the loss of his arm meant he couldn't do the work anymore. He is now a farmer.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

Charbel Khawand worked as a truck driver when he was injured in 2004 after driving over a mine. He has been farming ever since. The cooperative has helped set up and maintain over 100 new farms since its inception.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

The Nabih Berri Rehabilitation Compound, run by LWAH, is a medical centre that provides rehabilitation therapy and also houses a prosthetic limb workshop.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

Hussein Ghandour is a land mine survivor who has worked as a prosthetics technician for 13 years. He was seven when he was injured.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

At least 903 Lebanese citizens were killed, and 2,780 people seriously injured between 1975-2012 by unexploded ordinance in Lebanon, according to the Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor. Here, an upper thigh is being made at the prosthetics workshop.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

LWAH launched the Landmine Survivors' Football team in 2001 to bring survivors together once a week to play football. Some members of the team also compete in international sporting events, such as the upcoming Asian Para Games. 



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

Many of the players refer to the team as a 'family'. Mohammed Ali al-Haj, 50, teases the goalkeeper he just scored on. 'I play football thinking that disability is not a barrier. Nothing can stop me.'



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

Players at all levels can play on the team.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

The team provides many with a place where they can collectively come to terms with their injuries in an accepting atmosphere. Building self-confidence is the main goal of the project. 



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

Team member Jihad Saloub, 39, was injured in 2012 when he picked up a shiny object on the beach which exploded. He lost his forearm in the explosion, and suffered damage to the rest of his body.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

Despite these initiatives, many ordinance remain, posing a real threat across Lebanon. The accident rate has gone up in the last few years, owed partially to the increased population in the country as a result of the war in neighbouring Syria.



/David Shaw/Al Jazeera

Ali Srour, 31, is a survivor from the southern Lebanon town of Ayta ash-Shab. He was injured at 18, losing a large part of his left leg. Ali has a degree in law, but he struggles to find employment befitting his abilities. 'In the very beginning after your accident you have to make a choice, either to go on or to surrender, I choose to go on.'




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images:
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captions:

(***)Remaining land mine and cluster munition contamination is said to affect 565 towns and more than 900,000 people,(***) the Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor has found.

;*;

The Mines Advisory Group (MAG) partakes in land mine and cluster munition clearance activities in Lebanon(***)s ordinance-infested south. Wafaa Diab has worked for MAG for over a year helping rehabilitate Lebanon(***)s land.

;*;

Unexploded ordinance have a significant economic impact due to the restriction of movement and development of certain regions. Residents of rural areas can suffer the most as they cannot farm or use their lands. Here, the red poles identify the border of mined farmland.

;*;

Bechara Aoun, 50, has been part of the Jezzine Landmine Survivors Cooperative since his injury in 2001. He used to be a baker, but the loss of his arm meant he couldn(***)t do the work anymore. He is now a farmer.

;*;

Charbel Khawand worked as a truck driver when he was injured in 2004 after driving over a mine. He has been farming ever since. The cooperative has helped set up and maintain over 100 new farms since its inception.

;*;

The Nabih Berri Rehabilitation Compound, run by LWAH, is a medical centre that provides rehabilitation therapy and also houses a prosthetic limb workshop.

;*;

Hussein Ghandour is a land mine survivor who has worked as a prosthetics technician for 13 years. He was seven when he was injured.

;*;

At least 903 Lebanese citizens were killed, and 2,780 people seriously injured between 1975-2012 by unexploded ordinance in Lebanon, according to the Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor. Here, an upper thigh is being made at the prosthetics workshop.

;*;

LWAH launched the Landmine Survivors(***) Football team in 2001 to bring survivors together once a week to play football. Some members of the team also compete in international sporting events, such as the upcoming Asian Para Games. 

;*;

Many of the players refer to the team as a (***)family(***). Mohammed Ali al-Haj, 50, teases the goalkeeper he just scored on. (***)I play football thinking that disability is not a barrier. Nothing can stop me.(***)

;*;

Players at all levels can play on the team.

;*;

The team provides many with a place where they can collectively come to terms with their injuries in an accepting atmosphere. Building self-confidence is the main goal of the project. 

;*;

Team member Jihad Saloub, 39, was injured in 2012 when he picked up a shiny object on the beach which exploded. He lost his forearm in the explosion, and suffered damage to the rest of his body.

;*;

Despite these initiatives, many ordinance remain, posing a real threat across Lebanon. The accident rate has gone up in the last few years, owed partially to the increased population in the country as a result of the war in neighbouring Syria.

;*;

Ali Srour, 31, is a survivor from the southern Lebanon town of Ayta ash-Shab. He was injured at 18, losing a large part of his left leg. Ali has a degree in law, but he struggles to find employment befitting his abilities. (***)In the very beginning after your accident you have to make a choice, either to go on or to surrender, I choose to go on.(***)

Daylife ID:
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Photographer:
;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;
Image Source:
David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera;*;David Shaw/Al Jazeera
Gallery Source:
Daylife
Daylife Raw Data:
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