Maputo Summit on Anti-Personnel Mines

date: 20 June 2014

The 3rd Review Conference of the Ottawa Convention on the Prohibition of Anti-Personnel Mines will be held in Maputo from 23 to 27 June 2014.

The 1st Meeting of the States Parties took place in Maputo just after the Convention came into force in 1999. Mozambique was then seriously affected by anti-personnel mines. However, fifteen years later, at the cost of great efforts, the country is on the point of finishing the mine clearance operation across its vast area. Mozambique's success is a cause for hope and an example for other states still affected by anti-personnel mines.

The 161 States Parties to the Convention will adopt an action plan setting out the priorities in the principal chapters of the Convention, namely, universalisation, the destruction of stocks, mine clearance, victim assistance, international cooperation and assistance, transparency and compliance with the Convention by the States Parties.

Even before the negotiations for the Ottawa Convention, on 9 March 1995, Belgium was the 1st country in the world to adopt a law banning anti-personnel mines and has always played a leading role in the action against mines.

Belgium, which held the Presidency of the 4th Meeting of the States Parties in 2002, will hold the Presidency of the 14th Conference of States Parties for a term that begins on 1 January 2015 and ends in December 2015. In this respect, it will hold the Vice-Presidency for the 3rd Review Conference in Maputo. Belgium also coordinates the universalisation group and the reporting group.

Her Royal Highness, Princess Astrid, Special Envoy of the Ottawa Convention, has long been personally involved in the fight against mines and will take part in the 4-day Review Conference in Maputo. In particular, she will deliver Belgium's speech at the high-level plenary session, take part in a seminar on victim assistance and meet with victims of anti-personnel mines who are part of a Handicap International programme.