At least three children were killed in an explosion on Sunday, June 7, whilst playing with items of suspected unexploded ordnance (UXO) in the Fouta Djallon region city of Labe. The group are believed to have been playing with several discarded grenades in the Poreko area of the city when one detonated. A fourth child is reported to have been seriously injured in the incident. It is currently unclear where the grenades had been found, but the area in which the group were playing is close to a local army barracks and had occasionally been used for military training.
Although less afflicted than many of its neighbors, some areas of Guinea continue to be affected by UXO and explosive remnants of war (ERW) contamination. Locations near the border with Sierra Leone where security forces clashed with non-state armed groups in the early 2000s, particularly around Gueckedou and Pamelap, are believed to present the highest UXO risk. However, many munitions storage sites in the country are poorly managed and do not meet international safety standards, resulting in an increased risk of urban UXO contamination around military bases.
Those in Guinea should never approach or touch any unfamiliar objects that may be UXO, but immediately report any such items to police or local authorities. Travelers should exercise a heightened level of caution in remote areas where UXO may remain a threat and avoid departing from defined paths and roads where possible.
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