The 1997 Minister of Foreign Affairs of Norway H.E. Bjørn Tore Godal, hands over the Oslo Declaration to the then-Minister of Foreign Affairs of Canada Hon. Lloyd Axworthy.
Geneva and Oslo – Norway, one of the pioneer leaders in the international movement to ban landmines, has announced it will seek the Presidency of the landmark Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention which it helped create 20 years ago.
“From Norway’s perspective, the Convention is the centrepiece of our collective efforts to address the unacceptable humanitarian consequences of anti-personnel landmines. We seek to lead the work of this engaged community of States Parties over the course of 2019 leading to the Fourth Review Conference,” said the President-nominee, Norwegian Ambassador to the UN in Geneva, H.E. Hans Brattskar.
The Presidency of a Review Conference is responsible for producing important outcomes, in particular for developing an Action Plan that can cohesively guide the efforts of the Parties for the following five years. The 2019-2024 Action Plan would serve to guide States Parties in their efforts to make substantial progress on their ambition to achieve a mine-free world.
“The Convention has established firm normative frameworks and a productive arena for collaboration between States, international and non-governmental organisations to strengthen the protection of civilians in armed conflict. Promoting a worldwide acceptance of the Convention and its norms, and an effective implementation of this treaty has been a priority for Norway since the Convention was adopted in Oslo in 1997,” said Ambassador Brattskar, seen above right.
Since the Convention was adopted in Oslo, Norway’s leadership in the work of the Convention has included presiding over the substantive work carried out soon after the treaty entered into force in 2000, and the 2009 Cartagena Summit on a Mine-Free World in Colombia.
The photo at left shows Second Meeting of the States Parties President, Ambassador Stefan Kongstad in Mozambique in 2014. At right, Ambassador Susan Eckey, President of the Second Review Conference.
Norway is also among the world’s top five mine action donors, currently co-leads a global anti-landmine initiative for Colombia, and supports mine clearance, mine risk education, and victim assistance in 20 countries around the globe. Photo above at left shows Haakon, Crown Prince of Norway receiving a plaque of appreciation from the Crown Prince of Jordan upon completion of its mine clearance programme. Norway was an important partner in Jordan's mine clearance efforts.
“Norway’s interest in the Convention will remain so until we, as States Parties, have fulfilled our ambition to rid the world of the suffering caused by these insidious weapons which continue to maim and kill decades after conflicts end. We hope to achieve robust and lasting results, and believe that multilateral engagement, cooperation and full implementation of the Convention is the key to achieving our objectives,” said the Ambassador.
It is expected that Norway will begin its chairing of the Convention immediately following the Seventeenth Meeting of States Parties as it concludes the last week of November.
For more information please contact the Convention's Implementation Support Unit: ISU@apminebanconvention.org