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Halo Trust at Holyrood

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By Rod Edgar
Dumfries and West
Halo Trust at Holyrood

A CHARITY in the region which works to clear landmines and war debris in 20 countries and territories has been given a Parliamentary reception.

The HALO Trust had a chance to tell Scottish politicians about their work during a visit to Holyrood in Edinburgh last Tuesday, attending an event hosted by MSP Joan McAlpine.
Scottish Conservatives leader Ruth Davidson was among those guests introduced to representatives of the charity, which is based at Carronfoot, and she said: “Great to see The HALO Trust in Parliament this evening and to support the tremendous work they do.”
Other attendees included South of Scotland Labour MSP Colin Smyth and Dumfriesshire MSP Oliver Mundell.
Those present had the opportunity to try out landmine detection equipment.
And for many of the politicians, journalists, diplomats and business leaders present, it was a first introduction to HALO’s operations and to Scotland’s leading role in clearing landmines and other debris of war.
HALO employs over 6000 people around the world, making it Scotland’s largest international charity.
The theme of the evening was Scotland’s role in clearing the debris of war, and HALO’S CEO James Cowan said: “Many people in Scotland and in the Scottish Parliament probably have no inkling that HALO was founded by Scots and has its headquarters near Thornhill in Dumfries and Galloway.”
A discussion on the changing face of mine clearance and conflict was led by Sir Hew Strachan, the military historian and Professor of International Relations at St Andrews University.
The reception also heard from Stanley Brown, director of the Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement at the US Department of State, with the US serving as the largest single donor to mine clearance programmes around the globe.


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