An average of 18 people were killed or injured every day by mines or explosive remnants of war during 2015, a 75 per cent increase on the previous year, according to the International Campaign to Ban Landmines latest report.

The Landmine Monitor 2016 report recorded some 6,461 mine or explosive remnants of war casualties during 2015 which, as well as being a 75 per cent increase on the 2014 figure, was the highest since 2006. The report found the increase is mainly attributable to a growth in casualties in conflicts in Libya, Syria, Ukraine and Yemen but also reflects improvements in data collection.

In cases where the status of those killed or injured was known, the majority - as many as 78 per cent  - were civilians. More than a third - 38 per cent - were children while women and girls made up 14 per cent of all casualties where the gender was known, a slight increase on previous years.

The report found that the new use of antipersonnel mines by states remains relatively rare with only Myanmar, North Korea and Syria - all of which are not parties to the international Mine Ban Treaty - having government forces actively planting the weapons in the year to October, 2016. But non-government forces did use the mines in a broader range of nations including in Afghanistan, Colombia, Iraq, Libya, Myanmar, Pakistan, Syria, Ukraine, and Yemen, as well as Nigeria - the only country which was new to this year's list.

Nations reported that at least 171 square kilometres of land was cleared of mines in 60 countries during 2015 and four disputed regions known to still have mines. The largest areas to be cleared were in Afghanistan, Cambodia and Croatia. More than 2.1 million stockpiled mines were destroyed in 2015.

The report also found that while more than 50 states were producing landmines before the Mine Ban Treaty, which became international law in 1999, only 11 nations are currently identifed as potential producers but of them, only four are most likely to be actively producing - India, Myanmar, Pakistan and South Korea.

www.the-monitor.org/media/2386748/Landmine-Monitor-2016-web.pdf