Human Security and Mine Action

In this recording from The Ottawa Process Twenty Years Later in October 2016, Handicap International’s Clare O’Reilly speaks to human security and mine action. Human Security is freedom from want and freedom from fear.

“[Human security] is intrinsically linked to mine action, it’s making sure that humanitarian mine action and our workers, our operators is linked not just to emergency response which we’re seeing more and more but right the way through to the work that’s being done on development activities as well.”

In the wake of the Ottawa Treaty, NGOs have adopted a holistic, collaborative approach to mine action that includes arms control, development, public health, international law. Some of the challenges include incomplete data and asymmetric warfare that is increasingly the norm in places like Syria and Iraq. Explosive devices in these conflicts create massively complex contamination that communities are forced to deal with themselves without any training or equipment.


Clare O’Reilly is the Mine Action Development Manager at Handicap International. She has developed and supported projects across Angola, Burundi, Cambodia, DRC, Iraq, Lebanon, Philippines, Uganda, UK, US, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania and Somalia. She has a Master’s Degree in Post-War Recovery Studies from the University of York and a Bachelor of Arts in War Studies from King’s College, London.