The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)


Enhancing safety and recovery in Ukraine

With funding from the government of France, UNOPS is working with a certified mine action operator and Ukraine’s National Police to help reduce the threat of explosive ordnance in the Chernihiv region.

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The Chernihiv region of Ukraine lies north of the capital, Kyiv, and borders Belarus and Russia. The region is integral to Ukraine's agricultural sector and has faced daunting challenges due to the presence of explosive remnants of war (ERW) leftover following the Russian invasion that began in February 2022. Vast tracts of agricultural land are now laden with mines and ERWs, crippling the region's economic activity and posing severe safety risks to communities.

Clearing our land of explosives is a priority, since it is the cornerstone for addressing a number of issues, such as economic activity, mobility and access to infrastructure.

Viacheslav Chaus - Head of the Chernihiv regional administration

“There are a number of mine action operators now present in the region, including international ones, but there is still plenty of work to be done,” added Viacheslav Chaus.

To address the issue, UNOPS, with funding from the government of France, is working with the Humanitarian Demining Center of Ukroboronservice – a Ukrainian state-owned entity with extensive experience in humanitarian demining activities around the world. The co-operation focuses on Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD), clearing a variety of EO threats. Three EOD teams have been deployed across the Chernihiv region. Their job is to make sure these harmful items are found and safely removed from the area. The work enables the official procedure of land release, removing physical and legal barriers to productive land use, and will allow farmers to safely work the land again.

In addition, with the support of the government of France, UNOPS is strengthening the technical and operational capabilities of the National Police of Ukraine in the Chernihiv region. This includes providing training and tools to the police to enhance their capacity to find and safely manage explosives – improving safety in the area.

By creating a safer environment, enabling the return of the agricultural sector and other businesses, the project supports Ukraine’s ongoing recovery.

"A safer, more prosperous future for the people of Ukraine is the cornerstone of our mission,” explained Tim Lardner, Director of UNOPS Multi-Country Office in Ukraine.

“Through this partnership, we are not just clearing land; we are rebuilding lives and livelihoods. The support from the government of France, combined with the expertise of Ukroboronservice and the National Police of Ukraine, will enable us to tackle these challenges and ensure the agricultural community can return to their livelihoods, safely and securely,” he added.

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