LUGANSK, August 11. /TASS/. Clearing the whole territory of the Lugansk People’s Republic of mines will take about 20 years, the Lugunsk people’s militia’s spokesman Andrey Marochko has told TASS in an interview.
"Specialists’ forecasts are unconsoling. They say that it will take about 20 years to completely clear the entire territory of the LPR," he said.
Every day the People's Militia’s engineering units and the Russian troops jointly clear about 5-8 square kilometers of mines. Marochko said it was a very big problem, because the Ukrainian army had been randomly mining the region for eight years.
"There are no maps of minefields. In other words, we have one large minefield before us. This concerns those areas where active hostilities are still in progress, and the former line of engagement along the Seversky Donets River. There is a huge number of mines and unexploded ordnance. Both have been there since 2014," Marochko said.
At present, the main bomb disposal forces are commissioned to demine residential areas and farmland. Civilian infrastructure - water pumps, bridges, and power lines - are a priority, too.
"When this job has been done, it will be possible to say there is relative safety. Then repair and restoration work will begin. The next task will be to gradually demine areas that are not densely populated, but were heavily mined by Ukrainian troops," he said.
Among the most mined areas, Marochko mentioned territories near the border with Russia.
"The mouth of the Seversky Donets River is the most densely mined area. And there is a large amount of unexploded ordnance near Lisichansk. Remote mining of the terrain is still going on there, because the area is still within the reach of Ukrainian artillery. Green-colored leaf-shaped Lepestok antipersonnel mines are commonplace," he said.