Japan gives Ukraine mine detectors at handover ceremony

Japan delivered landmine detectors and vehicles to Ukraine during a handover ceremony held in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv on Monday.

The Russian military placed landmines across Ukraine after it invaded the country.

The handover ceremony was held at a square in front of the Saint-Sophia Cathedral, which is a World Heritage site located in central Kyiv.

Ukrainian officials were joined at the event by Japan's Ambassador to Ukraine, Matsuda Kuninori, State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Tsuji Kiyoto, and State Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Iwata Kazuchika.

Tsuji said landmines and unexploded shells must be removed, so residents can be safe, and so industries and people's livelihoods can be reconstructed.

Fifty mine detectors and 40 vehicles that will be used by the mine removal unit were displayed on the square.

The Japan International Cooperation Agency, or JICA, was involved in supplying them to Ukraine's State Emergency Service.

Japan also plans to give Ukraine an eco-friendly extinguishing agent that was developed by a company in the southwestern Japanese city of Kitakyushu. The agent is produced with ingredients that are used to make soap. It is expected to help put out flames caused by Russian attacks.

A Ukrainian official said the Japanese aid is very important for Ukrainian personnel in charge of landmine removal, as it will enable them to do their work effectively and precisely.