Monday, 14 October, 2019

Prince Harry Recreates Princess Diana's Walk Through Minefield in Angola

An image of late Princess Diana the Mother of Prince Harry and former President Nelson Mandela An image of late Princess Diana the Mother of Prince Harry and former President Nelson Mandela
Marta Robbins | 29 September, 2019, 08:42

Harry will leave Angola and begin a tour of Malawi on Sunday - the final leg of his trip - without wife Meghan who is in South Africa with son Archie.

"I wonder if she was still alive whether that would still be the case, I'm pretty sure she would have seen it through".

Towards the end of his visit, the duke set off a decades-old mine, which had been discovered earlier that day, in a controlled explosion to safely destroy it.

"More than 48 million stockpiled mines have been destroyed and 31 countries have been completely cleared of land mines", The HALO Trust said, while production of the weapons has nearly dried up.


Diana, Princess of Wales wearing a bombproof visor during her 1997 visit to a minefield in Huambo, in Angola. And echoing his mother, loud and clear, Prince Harry detonated a recently detected mine.

In response to Harry's pledge, the 38-year-old said: 'I'm very happy to hear him say that, it feels like the work in Angola will continue and we will be landmine free'. - Princess Diana, 1997 Today in Angola The Duke of Sussex will retrace his mother's steps to see the legacy of her work and how her connection with this community helped make the elimination of landmines a reality.

The princess was drawing attention to the more than one million landmines planted during Angola's 27-year civil war, which ended in 2002. "By clearing the landmines we can help this community find peace, and with peace comes opportunity", he said.

Harry visited the northern city of Huambo, where an iconic picture was taken of Princess Diana in 1997 as she walked through a minefield.


More than 122,000 people have been killed or injured by land mines from 1999 through 2017, according to the Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor, with nearly 3,000 people killed in 2017. This afternoon, 22 years later, The Duke was able to walk the same path, but now rather than walking amongst mines, he was able to walk among a bustling community with schools, colleges and small businesses.

The Duke of Sussex spoke about how, typically, the most vulnerable are at greatest risk, and how thousands of parents in Angola have to choose between cultivating mine-infested land or letting their families starve. He had a contemplative moment by a grand tree known as the Princess Diana tree, which marks the exact spot where she was photographed in 1997, before delivering a speech.

Sadly, she did not live to see the worldwide community come together to heed her plea: the Ottawa Treaty, formally known as the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention, was signed just months after her death.

The Duke of Sussex wore body armour as he made the walk, near the south-eastern town of Dirico, to highlight the threat posed by landmines.


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