Prince Harry 'irritated' over landmine clearance efforts


Prince Harry travelled to see the clearance work championed by his late mother

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Prince Harry is "irritated" that some nations which provided landmines are not helping with the clearance effort, one of his charities has revealed.

The head of the Halo Trust was speaking after the prince travelled to Angola to see the charity's mine clearance work.

Prince Harry visited Cuito Cuanavale and met those benefiting from the work.

The charity was championed by his late mother Princess Diana and is the oldest organisation of its kind. The prince is patron of its 25th Anniversary Appeal.

In 2010 he met some of Halo's teams working in Mozambique.

Start Quote

As a soldier [Prince Harry] is seeing so many people of his generation, of his age losing limbs - and that has really brought a focus on it”

End Quote Guy Willoughby Halo Trust

Shortly before her death in 1997, Princess Diana was filmed visiting minefields that were being cleared by the trust in Angola, drawing the world's attention to the situation.

The town of Cuito Cuanavale in south-eastern Angola is believed to be the most densely mined town in Africa, following the country's bloody and protracted civil war.

In a statement issued by Kensington Palace, Prince Harry said he was keen to support the charity in any way he could.

The trip took place earlier this month and Prince Harry's spokesman announced at the time that he was in Angola.

But the Dumfriesshire-based Halo Trust said it had decided to delay providing further details until now because of the fact that it was taking place in a private capacity and the "complicated field logistics" involved.

Prince Harry in Angola with HALO Trust officials in August 2013 The Halo Trust says its teams have destroyed more than 21,000 mines in Angola since the end of the civil war

Its chief executive Guy Willoughby said: "He [the prince] is irritated about the countries that supplied these landmines are not actually putting in any funds to clear them 25 years later.

"He has got quite a bee in his bonnet about that, and that is good.

"The commitment shown by Prince Harry plays an invaluable role in helping us to raise awareness of Halo's work and mission.

"He is technically very competent but he's also very good with dealing with the people, the villagers, the de-miners and he understands the big issue, even the political issue.

"Wars may be over but many people are still unable to resume their normal lives, facing the threat of death or injury by landmines every day."

He told BBC News that being able to support the charity was "hugely important" to Prince Harry, not just because of the family connection.

"As a soldier he is seeing so many people of his generation, of his age losing limbs. And that has really brought a focus on it.

"I think it has brought a focus on it for a lot of the British population of seeing so many people in their 20s who are losing limbs."

Angola's civil war left an estimated 500,000 dead, displaced four million and destroyed much of the country's infrastructure.

Despite huge efforts since the war ended in 2002 to clear the explosives, the country remains one of the most heavily mined in the world.

The Halo Trust said it has destroyed more than 21,300 anti-personnel and anti-tank mines in Angola but thousands of residents have been killed or maimed.

Mr Willoughby said Halo was making "excellent progress" in Angola and the province of Huambo was now close to becoming mine-free, but there was still 19 years of clearance work to be done across the country as a whole.


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  • rate this

    Comment number 175.

    160ladycarole "...if he were my son I should be very proud of him"
    If any son of mine put on an Afrika Korps uniform or allowed himself to be caught with hookers in Las Vegas, I'd horsewhip the blighter.
    Don't you see that this is the Palace's PR machine trying to erase all that? (note one ?)

  • rate this

    Comment number 174.

    Good on him for continuing such a worthwhile cause. As for the cynics let 'em bleat. I'm no royalist but he seems pretty grounded so fair play to him. My wife met him in Nottingham a few months ago and said he was just brilliant at connecting with people and the youths that she was working with. Most of them from disadvantaged backgrounds. She, is also no royalist.

  • rate this

    Comment number 173.

    Why are we saying "the countries that supplied these landmines" rather than "the US and the UK, international arms dealers extraordinaire"? Or is that not in the propaganda manual?

  • Comment number 172.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this

    Comment number 171.

    " Oh Lord give me a Mercedes Benz" So finally you know! Hurry up Harry Sham 69, we're off to Las Vegas to celebrate the Royal baby boom!
    Commander Bond

  • rate this

    Comment number 170.

    The people who made these terrible things and laid them should be ashamed of themselves that people are still being killed and injured by them. The principle here should be the same as for pollution, where the polluter is made to pay for the clean up and any injuries caused.

  • rate this

    Comment number 169.

    The BBC should be focusing on victims of mines, not Prince Harry

  • rate this

    Comment number 168.

    @ 142... "anti-royalist morons are posting derogatory comments just for the sake of it"... Not for the sake of it, but because it's their opinion. It might not match your world view, but it's just as valid. There's a disturbing trend to dismiss any opposing voice in an online debate as "trolling" - the default accusation if you can't take on board other people's points of view.

  • rate this

    Comment number 167.

    Rubbish BBC reporting focusing on Prince Harry and not on the specifics of the landmine issue. For example the report tells us nations that supply landmines are not doing enough to clear them, yet the reporters fail to tell us specifically which nations supply the landmines etc.

  • rate this

    Comment number 166.


    Right you are. Very big problems like...

  • rate this

    Comment number 165.

    @161. June

    When you put it like that, perhaps they are a slightly better choice, but they are still a high cost choice.

    They could easily pay for themselves for a few years but it never seems to be up for debate, while we lose more and more services from the end of the scale where people NEED the help that is offered I cannot support them taking up resources that would be better placed.

  • Comment number 164.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • rate this

    Comment number 163.


    My hatred for the royal family grows every day and is made all the worst by snippets of complete bull like this.


    It's OK Mooker, your hatred won't go beyond daydreams and venting your spleen on HYS. You're as impotent as you are irrelevant!

    I bet you're a UAF member! Pathetic!


  • rate this

    Comment number 162.

    It would be interesting and useful to know the names of the countries, that these mines came from and what if anything, the international communities is doing to force these nations help clean the area of this deadly menace.

  • rate this

    Comment number 161.

    156 - John you sound like a good guy. I serve as a Trustee for a charity and do my share elsewhere - so we've probably more in common than we first thought.

    However, I'd rather have the Royals than President Blair, Brown or Prescott. As for President Mandelsohn I'd have to emigrate - and a president wouldn't be any cheaper anyway. Like the curate's egg - every family "is bad in parts"!

  • rate this

    Comment number 160.

    Harry is a fantastic young man - if he were my son I should be very proud of him. For those who say he doesn't DO anything - you have NO IDEA what he does- do you have his diary? Landmines are a scourge of the world and he genuinely cares and tries to help. DO YOU????????

  • rate this

    Comment number 159.

    He must know deep down that his mother would have at least partially disowned him over his chosen career as a bringer of death? He must know deep down his father lives only for himself and himself alone? maybe this is him seeking peace with his mother at some level? in so doing will he reject the father who made him happy to carry a shooting stick long ago when he was all but a innocent child?

  • rate this

    Comment number 158.


    You look to the internet for truth? How comical.

    The internet is so full of gossip, calumny, conspiracy, distortion, inadequate reportage, bogus research, opinion, arguable facts, nonsense and utter drivel one is only left wondering at the shallow nature of the human race. The internet could be such a fine thing, and is in parts, but, as usual, the oddly named homo sapiens ruins it.

  • rate this

    Comment number 157.

    As they are in maned. An apache is maned and will only fire when told too and at the enemy."

    What have horses' manes got to do with this?

  • rate this

    Comment number 156.

    @141. June
    I have worked very hard while having a job, I have donated to charity, I have worked for charity for free, I've taken in homeless people and helped them into housing*, I've fed hungry people*, I've done enough to have figured out how little the royals actually do compared to their wealth/position of power and how much we all do.

    Enjoy your walk.

    *in addition to the work and donations


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