Norway takes over presidency of Mine Ban Treaty

On 30 November, Norway took over the presidency of the multilateral Mine Ban Treaty. Currently, Norway is funding mine action in 18 countries including Vietnam and Laos.

Norwegian People’s Aid searching for mines in Vietnam. Photo: Lærke Weensgaard

The Norwegian presidency will take as its point of departure the humanitarian aspect of the treaty, according to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“This treaty is an important tool to ensure the protection of civilians both during conflict and long after conflicts are over,” writes the Ministry.

Norway has been supporting mine action for 25 years and is one of the top five donors to global mine action. In Vietnam and Laos, Norway has been supporting mine action through Norwegian People´s Aid.

The Mine Ban Treaty was adopted in Oslo on 18 September 1997. Since the treaty was adopted, 164 states parties have joined, 53 million stockpiled mines have been destroyed, and vast areas have been successfully cleared and released to local communities.

In 2017, 87 % of recorded casualties from landmines were civilians. 47 % of casualties were children and at least 2 452 children were killed or injured by landmines, according to the Norwegian Embassy in Hanoi.

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