Sri Lanka


Last updated: 23 January 2018

Casualties Overview

All known casualties by end 2016

22,193 mine/explosive remnants of war (ERW) casualties

Casualties occurring in 2016

8 (2015: 8)

2016 casualties by survival outcome

8 (1 killed; 7 injured)

2016 casualties by device type

2 antivehicle mines; 1 antipersonnel mine; 5 ERW


In 2016, eight adult male mine/ERW casualties were recorded in the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka in six incidents.[1] Eight adult male casualties were also recorded  in 2015, in five mine/ERW incidents.[2] This marked a significant decrease in annual casualties compared to the 21 and 22 mine/ERW casualties, in 2014 and 2013 respectively.[3] Sri Lanka’s National Mine Action Strategy 2016–2020 reports different annual total casualty figures for the two years prior to 2015: with 16 casualties in 2014 and 21 in 2013 recorded.[4]

In 2014, UNICEF reported that since the 1980s some 22,177 mine/ERW casualties had been recorded, including 1,603 civilian casualties. However, from 2006 to 2009 accurate casualty information was difficult to access due to ongoing conflict, likely resulting in under-reporting.[5] In April 2010, it was reported that since the 1980s there were a total of 21,993 mine casualties, including 1,419 civilian returnees; 3,770 recorded amputees among the armed forces, police, and civil defense forces; and 16,804 mine casualties among the non-state armed group, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).[6] From 1999 to the end of 2016, the Monitor identified 1,185 casualties in Sri Lanka (144 killed; 577 injured; 464 unknown).

[1] Email from Mihlar Mohamed, UNICEF, Colombo, 11 July 2017.

[2] Ibid., 11 May 2016; and “Sri Lanka National Mine Action Strategy 2016–2020,” May 2016, p. 19.

[3] Emails from Mihlar Mohamed, UNICEF, Colombo, 11 May 2015; and from Vidya Abhayagunawardena, Monitor Researcher 19 May 2015.

[5] Email from Mihlar Mohamed, UNICEF, Colombo, 11 May 2015.

[6] Statement by Brig. Udaya Nanayakkara, Chief Field Engineer, Sri Lanka Army, in “On landmines and explosive remnants of war: raising awareness and taking Action,” Asian Tribune (Colombo), 30 April 2010. Although not stated, presumably all these casualties were included in the 30-year total.