World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


US Leadership In Clearing Landmines, Saving Lives


Fact Sheet
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
November 13, 2007

United States Leadership in Clearing Landmines and Saving Lives

The 10th Anniversary of the U.S. Department of State's Public-Private Partnership Program to reinforce humanitarian mine action occurred last month. Next month marks the 9th anniversary of the entry into force of Amended Protocol II to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW), the world's first landmine treaty, and to which the United States is a party.

Next week the 8th meeting of states parties to an anti-personnel mine ban treaty, commonly known as the Ottawa Convention, will take place. We take this opportunity to reiterate United States landmine policy and actions.

POLICY: The military capabilities provided by landmines remain necessary for the United States to protect its armed forces and ensure the success of their mission.

The United States is also committed to eliminating the humanitarian risks posed by all landmines - both anti-personnel and anti-vehicle. It stands with those who seek to protect innocent civilians from these weapons. However, the United States has not signed the Ottawa Convention because it fails to balance legitimate military requirements with humanitarian concerns.

ACTIONS: In 1992 the United States banned the export of its anti-personnel mines. In 1999 it removed its last minefield, which protected its base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and ratified Amended Protocol II. In 2004 the United States committed to never employ a "persistent" (long-lived) landmine after 2010, relying instead only on short-duration, self-destructing/self-deactivating mines that cease to be a threat within hours or days after combat.

In 2005, the United States banned the use of non-detectable mines, both anti-personnel and anti-vehicle, surpassing the requirements of both landmine treaties.

In 2006, the United States, joined by 24 other states, issued a declaration at the Third Review Conference of the CCW, committing each government to make anti-vehicle mines used outside of perimeter-marked areas detectable, not to use such mines outside a perimeter-marked area if they are not self-destructing or self-neutralizing, to prevent the transfer of such mines that do not meet these criteria, and then only to transfer such mines to states accepting this policy.

Since 1993, the United States has spent over $1.2 billion dollars in nearly 50 mine-affected countries and regions for: clearance of mines and explosive remnants of war (most of which are of foreign origin); mine risk education; survivors assistance; landmine surveys; research and development on better ways to detect and clear mines; training foreign deminers and mine action managers; and destroying at-risk stocks of arms and munitions.

Thanks in part to United States' help, the annual landmine casualty rate has dropped from over 26,000 four years ago to around 5,000 today, and Costa Rica, Djibouti, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Kosovo, Macedonia, Namibia, and Suriname have achieved mine "impact-free" status. Nicaragua should follow suit in 2008.

2007/999
Released on November 13, 2007

ENDS

More: Latest World News | Top World News | World Digest | Archives

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>

ALSO:

At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>

ALSO:

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news