Today marks the entry into force of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction (Ottawa Convention). The Secretary-General has welcomed this in a message, describing it as "a day whose arrival few could have predicted, and whose import to the millions whose lives and limbs may be saved from these barbarous weapons, cannot be overestimated". The United Nations remains deeply engaged in the effort to make this treaty truly effective, by assisting States in locating and clearing these weapons.
All around the world, the occasion is being marked by the ringing of bells. To emphasize his personal commitment to this cause, the Secretary- General will himself ring the Peace Bell here at United Nations Headquarters at one o'clock this afternoon.
All are welcome to attend.
* *** *