No More Landmines

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Columbus 21 Course 3 (Heisei 24) pg. 86-87

No More Landmines
Word count299
BookColumbus 21

Look at this photo. What do you think is it? It's a bomb. This kind of bomb is called a landmine. There are more than 100 million of them buried in various countries around the world. They have killed or injured hundreds of thousands of people. Many were children.

Amemiya Kiyoshi, the president of a construction machinery company, visited Cambodia on business in 1994. As he was walking around Phnom Penh, he saw a lot of street children. Many of them had terrible injuries. These injuries were because of landmines. He met one young girl with an old lady. This young girl's parents were killed by landmines. The old lady said, "Please help the people of this country."

On the plane back to Japan, Mr. Amemiya felt deep sadness and anger. He said to himself, "I'm an engineer. I'll make a machine to remove landmines and help the Cambodians!"

Mr. Amemiya told his employees the sad story of the landmines in Cambodia. They wanted to help him. He then started to look for people with knowledge about landmines, and visited Cambodia to learn more. After three years, the team finally succeeded in making their first landmine-removal machine.

In 1999, Mr. Amemiya took the machine to Cambodia himself for testing. It was dangerous work, but the test was a success.
In the year 2000, he sent two landmine-removal machines to Cambodia. Later, he sent more machines to many different countries.

Mr. Amemiya visited Cambodia again and was happy to see a school in a place that once had a lot of landmines. The children were playing, studying, and having fun. They were no longer worried about landmines. Mr. Amemiya never forgot about the street children he saw in Phnom Penh. It took 15 years, but his dream finally came true.

See also