NGO Halo Trust Somaliland is an organization dedicated to removing debris left behind by wars

The Somaliland Republic, a de facto sovereign state located on the east coast of Africa, is still recovering from years of civil war.

“There have been a number of conflicts that Somaliland was involved in,” Jane Strangways, program manager of Halo Trust Somaliland, told i24NEWS.


“With Ethiopia, and then a civil war, and then inter-clan violence meant layers of mine-lay.”

Halo Trust Somaliland Turning A War Zone Into A Haven
Jane Strangways, program manager of Halo Trust Somaliland, celebrates with Somaliland residents during a ceremony to commemorate NGO Halo Trust’s work in the region to clear mines, in a screen capture taken on November 30, 2021.

NGO Halo Trust is an organization dedicated to removing debris left behind by wars, particularly land mines, and operates in 27 countries.

Strangways, who worked for more than a decade for British Intelligence, became the first woman to lead Halo Trust Somaliland, overseeing almost 530 employees.

Every year in Somaliland – unrecognized by the international community – an average of 200 landmines are found and destroyed.

An i24NEWS correspondent joined a team from Halo Trust Somaliland as they embarked on a mission to clean the Aboukha field, a mixed minefield of anti-tank and anti-personnel explosives.

“When you respect all the safety instructions, there’s no problem, so I’m not scared,” Youssef told i24NEWS, a de-miner for Halo Trust Somaliland.

“If it’s a landmine, we have the necessary protection. But, if it’s an anti-tank mine, we could all die.”

The organization relies on local staff, who are trained in mine clearing, to search for arms caches, anti-personnel mines, and explosive devices from past wars.

Halo Trust has six incumbents in Somaliland, with headquarters in its capital Hargeisa, and is the region’s third-largest employer.

“We have a jural – one to clear landmines, and the second one to create employment in areas of poverty,” Strangways said.

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