More photos of the Pledging Conference can be found on Flickr.
Geneva - On 2 March, during a pledging conference for implementation of the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention (Ottawa Convention) organized by the Chilean Presidency, the Ambassador of Sri Lanka to the UN in Geneva, H.E. Ravinatha Aryasinha announced that Sri Lanka will be acceding to the Convention, becoming the 163rd State Party.
By joining the Convention, Sri Lanka undertakes to "never, under any circumstance, use, stockpile, produce or transfer anti-personnel mines.”
Sri Lanka will also be required to destroy any existing stockpiled anti-personnel within four years, and address any known mined areas within 10 years after the Convention enters into force for Sri Lanka.
"I am pleased to inform, that at a meeting of cabinet ministers held early this morning, it was approved that Sri Lanka accedes to the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpile, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction," said the Ambassador before the States Parties assembled for the First Pledging Conference for the Implementation of the Convention.
During the Pledging Conference, the Ambassador of Sri Lanka thanked the various demining organizations currently assisting with landmine clearance and the States that have supported such efforts and further requested the international community's support to its ongoing mine action programme.
"Currently 64 square kilometers are still contaminated with landmines," said the Ambassador.
Sri Lanka had previously indicated to the Convention that it was "taking active steps" to accede to the 162-member treaty.
Chile, as president of the Convention welcomed Sri Lanka's announcement, looking forward to Sri Lanka's participation at the Fifteenth Meeting of the States Parties to take place in Santiago, Chile from 28 November to 2 December 2016.
For more information contact the Implementation Support Unit, +41 22 730 93 11, isu(at)apminebanconvention.org. Find the Convention on Facebook, Twitter and Flickr.