Ukraine’s Agriculture Threatened by Land Mines

Over 1,800 square miles of Ukraine’s agricultural land have been littered with mines from the Ukraine War, Mykola Solshyi, minister of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine, said in an online speech at the April 22 G-7 Agriculture Ministers’ meeting in Japan. This farmland makes up about 10 percent of Ukraine’s mine-affected territory and is accountable for half of Ukraine’s land mine casualties.

Demining efforts: Ukraine has 2,600 sappers working to deactivate mines in liberated territory; however, each sapper can only survey 18 to 24 square yards of land in one day. Solshyi said this means it may take over 20 years to clear mines within agricultural territory alone.

  • In January, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said over 40 percent of Ukraine’s total land area had been laden with mines.
  • Only 17.5 percent of this area has been inspected and demined.
  • Only 220 square miles of the mined agricultural land has been cleared.

[Ukraine is] currently the largest minefield in the world. It’s not only making it difficult for people to travel, but also causing major disruptions in farming, which is one of our main industries.
—Denys Shmyhal

Farms at risk: Besides the risk of civilian casualties, these land mines also make it extremely difficult for farms to operate. Thousands of mines are scattered throughout farmland. The cost of demining is expensive, so cash-strapped farmers are taking matters into their own hands.

Among the farmers, there are brave people who do not wait until it is their turn to clear mines. Some farmers demine the fields on their own, with metal detectors, at their own peril and risk.
—Mykola Solshyi

Ukraine is one of the world’s largest exporters of agricultural products, making up nearly 41 percent of its total exports in 2021. But the Ukrainian government has predicted that this year’s spring crop will be 45 percent smaller, and the nation will only be able to export about half of what it did last year.

The Trumpet said: “Like Stalin, [Russian President Vladimir] Putin is obsessed with the annihilation of Ukraine’s statehood and sovereignty,” we wrote in October 2022. The trail of land mines Russia leaves behind as it retreats from Ukrainian territory is one way Putin is pursuing this annihilation. Even if Russia’s army is forced out of an area, Ukraine’s livelihood is still at risk because of these destructive land mines.

The history of Stalin’s evil reign, which Putin is increasingly imitating, points to a bleak future for Russia, Ukraine and the world. When that history is placed alongside Bible prophecy, the indication becomes a certainty.
—“Vladimir Putin—‘Evil on the Level of Joseph Stalin’