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19 Apr, 2008 06:13

Russia to clear landmines in Serbia

Russia is to start mine-clearing operations in Serbia. Work will begin on Monday after Russia’s Emergency Situations Minister Sergey Shoigu and Serbia’s Trade Minister Predrag Bubalo reached a deal in Belgrade.

Russia will pay the full cost of the clean-up, estimated at around $US 35 million.

It is believed that unexploded devices from NATO’s bombing of Serbia in 1999 as well as landmines from the many Yugoslav Wars between 1991 and 2001 may still lie buried in Serbian soil.

Some of them may hamper the construction of the Serbian part of South Stream gas pipeline.

Meanwhile, Russia's humanitarian aid programme in Kosovo is about to enter a new phase.

Medical supplies and equipment as well as up to 10,000 tonnes of wheat will be delivered to Serbian enclaves.