Chinese peacekeepers in Lebanon share demining expertise with UNIFIL troops

Li Jiayao

BEIRUT, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- Chinese demining peacekeepers in Lebanon have shared their expertise with a foreign battalion of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) during a recent operation.

Troops from the Irish-Finnish Battalion (IRISHFINBATT) of the UNIFIL visited the demining operation conducted by Chinese Peacekeeping Contingent on the blue line near the Lebanese-Israeli border last Thursday.

The operation was carried out at the request of the explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) team of IRISHFINBATT, aiming at exchanging experience on mine clearance, explosive ordnance disposal and strengthening cooperation between the two contingents.

After briefing on the demining operation, around 40 troops from the Multifunctional Engineer Unit of the 17th Chinese Peacekeeping Contingent demonstrated to the Irish and Finnish forces cut-lane clearance, signal source marking and suspected mines excavation.

Some IRISHFINBATT troops also participated in the operation with Chinese deminers and exchanged ideas on how to improve the effectiveness.

"It is a very worthwhile visit. We learn what hard work the Chinese have to do in the demining tasks. Thanks for all the efforts of Chinese deminers," said Liam Grace, head of EOD team in IRISHFINBATT.

Zhang Lei, instructor of the activity and platoon commander of Chinese demining team, said the operation helped both troops realize the strengths and weaknesses of their work. "It provides us reference to improve our operation."

Within less than three months, the Chinese demining team in Lebanon has destroyed 316 mines, clearing a minefield of nearly 1,500 square meters since its deployment near the blue line on June 11.



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