United Nations


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

6 September 1995


Fiftieth session
Item 46 of the provisional


Report of the Secretary-General


  Paragraphs  Page

  I.  INTRODUCTION .........................................    1 - 43

  MINE CLEARANCE .......................................5 - 494

  APPROACH .............................................50 - 7912

   A.  Elements of mine-action programmes ...............  54 - 7413

    1.  Creation of a national capacity ..............56 - 6314  

    2.  Mine surveys .................................64 - 6615

    3.  Education and training in mine awareness .....67 - 7016

    4.  Treatment and rehabilitation of land-mine
      victims ......................................71 - 7417

  B.  Coordination of activities .......................  75 - 7918


      *    A/50/150.

95-27061 (E)   031095/...
CONTENTS (continued)

  Paragraphs  Page


  A.  Consolidated inter-agency appeal process .........   8219

  B.  Assessed peace-keeping contributions ............. 8319

  C.  Voluntary Trust Fund for Assistance in Mine
    Clearance .......................................  84 - 9020

  D.  De-mining standby capacity ......................  91 - 9921

  V.  ACTIONS FOR A POLITICAL SOLUTION ....................  100 -10823

 VI.  CONCLUSION ..........................................  109 -12025


1.   At its  forty-ninth session,  the General  Assembly adopted  resolution
49/215,  entitled  "Assistance  in  mine  clearance",  by  consensus  on  23
December 1994.  In  the resolution the Assembly affirmed its deep concern at
the tremendous  humanitarian problem  caused by the  presence of  land-mines
and at the fact  that the number of mines  being laid each year exceeded the
number that could be cleared during the same period.

2.  The world-wide problem of  land-mines has continued to grow  in the past
year, with the laying  of new mines  outstripping the efforts of the  United
Nations and  other bodies  to remove them.   The ongoing  unrest and  recent
conflicts  in the former  Yugoslavia, Africa,  Asia, the  Caucasus and Latin
America  have all  resulted  in the  creation of  new  mine  pollution, with
resultant  dangerous long-term  social  and economic  consequences  for  the
civilian population.  As internal conflicts  and regional wars increase,  so
the popularity of the  anti-personnel mine as  a cheap and effective  weapon
of containment and terror becomes more  firmly established.  Mines  continue
to   be  laid  without   marking,  fencing   or  mapping,   in  defiance  of
international   law.     Unexploded  munitions   continue  to   litter   the
battlefields,  and the  increasing use  of bomblets  and other sub-munitions
delivered by rockets, artillery and aircraft  has exacerbated the problem by
increasing the  amount of potentially lethal  debris left  after a conflict.
The continuing  instability  of many  areas  of  the world  indicates  that,
without effective  controls on the  production, export, distribution and use
of land-mines, the problem will continue to increase.

3.  The  General Assembly, in  its resolution  49/215, called  for an  early
international meeting  on mine  clearance.   Pursuant to  that request,  the
International Meeting on Mine  Clearance was convened at Geneva from 5 to  7
July 1995.   The  Meeting comprised three  elements:   a high-level  segment
devoted to statements by Governments and organizations,  which also provided
an opportunity for  participants to announce contributions to the  Voluntary
Trust  Fund for  Assistance in  Mine  Clearance and  the United  Nations de-
mining standby capacity; nine panels of  experts to discuss various specific
aspects of  the land-mine problem; and an exhibition focusing  on the impact
of land-mines on  affected populations and international efforts to  address
the problem.   The Meeting  was set up as  a forum to enhance  international
awareness of  the different  dimensions of  the land-mine  problem, to  seek
further political and  financial support  for United  Nations activities  in
that  field and to promote greater international  cooperation.  Ninety-seven
Governments, 11  intergovernmental organizations,  16 United  Nations bodies
and 31  non-governmental organizations  participated in  the Meeting,  which
indicated the high level of interest in the matter.

4.    In its  resolution 49/215,  the  General  Assembly also  requested the
Secretary-General  to submit  to it  before  its  fiftieth session  a report
covering  the  activities  of  the  United  Nations  on  assistance  in mine
clearance during the past year and on the  operation of the Voluntary  Trust

Fund for  Assistance in  Mine Clearance.   The  present report is  submitted
pursuant to that request.

                  MINE CLEARANCE

5.  The United  Nations has provided assistance to several countries in  the
past  year.   Where necessary  and appropriate,  this was  done  through the
creation  of  programmes  that   integrated  all  mine-related   activities,
including   mine  surveys,  training,  clearance,  mine  awareness,  medical
treatment and  rehabilitation.   In order  to carry  out these  multifaceted
activities, the United Nations looks to  a number of discrete United Nations
entities that bring commitment and expertise to the mine-related  activities
in which they engage.

6.  Within  the United Nations, various  entities have engaged in activities
in order to carry out their various mandates:

  (a)  The Department of Humanitarian Affairs serves as the focal point  for
all land-mine related activities within  the United Nations system, ensuring
the formulation of consistent policies, the formulation  of integrated mine-
action programmes,  the mobilization of resources  for United Nations  land-
mine  activities  and  the coordination  of system-wide  activities  in this

  (b)  The  Department of Peace-keeping Operations carries out  mine-related
activities  in connection with  peace-keeping missions.  In conjunction with
the Department  of Humanitarian Affairs, it  assists in  preparing plans for
United  Nations mine-action  programmes.    The  Department advises  on  the
practical implementation of those plans in  the fields of training,  survey,
clearance,  management and specialized  equipment, and  on the  need for the
development of new mine-clearance technologies;

  (c)   The efforts of the  Office of the  United Nations High  Commissioner
for  Refugees  (UNHCR)  to  protect  refugees  and  ensure  their  safe  and
voluntary return  have focused primarily  on mine-awareness activities,  but
have  also,  in  exceptional  cases,  included  mine-clearance,  survey  and
marking activities;

  (d)   The United  Nations Children's  Fund (UNICEF)  engages in activities
aimed  at  preventing  injury  to  children  in  mine-affected  nations,  in
particular  through mine-awareness  programmes.   Where injury  has  already
occurred,  UNICEF  assists children  in  their  physical  and  psychological
recovery, and their reintegration into society;

  (e)   The  United Nations  Development Programme  (UNDP), recognizing mine
clearance, mine  awareness and  rehabilitation as  development matters,  has
been  involved in a range of activities, providing support to national mine-
action offices, as well as mine surveys, clearance and training programmes;

  (f)    The  World  Food  Programme  (WFP)  has  undertaken  mine-clearance
projects  to clear  key access  routes necessary  for the  delivery  of food
relief  and often  provides support  to  other United  Nations  mine-related
efforts through the provision of food and logistical support;

  (g)  Other United Nations agencies,  such as the World Health Organization
(WHO), the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural  Organization
(UNESCO) and  the International Labour Organization  (ILO), have engaged  in
minerelated activities on a more limited basis.

7.  In addition to the United Nations system, there are other  organizations
actively involved in  alleviating the land-mine problem.  The  International
Committee  of  the  Red  Cross  (ICRC)  is  very  active  in  treatment  and
rehabilitation  efforts.     Numerous  non-governmental  organizations   are
involved in  mine-survey, mine-awareness,  rehabilitation and mine-clearance


8.   United Nations peace-keeping  forces carry out  mine clearance  for two
primary  purposes.  Firstly,  mine clearance  is often  necessary to provide
for  a secure environment  to engage in peace-keeping.   Secondly, they have
been  extensively involved  in  large mine-clearance  programmes,  when  de-
mining  is necessary  to  carry  out another  part of  their mandates.   For
example, in Cambodia, the United Nations  peace-keeping mandate included the
conduct of elections, so  polling sites were de-mined.   In Angola,  part of
the United Nations peace-keeping mandate is to restore the free movement  of
people  and to  create an  indigenous  de-mining  capacity, thus  the United
Nations  Angola Verification  Mission (UNAVEM  III)  will work  closely with
other United Nations agencies in the development of integrated programmes.

Specific country programmes


9.  There are an estimated 10  million mines strewn throughout  Afghanistan,
a  country  still troubled  by  internal  conflict.    Mines and  unexploded
ordnance are located in almost every conceivable type  of terrain.  The vast
majority  of mines  were scattered  at  random,  with no  records indicating
their precise  locations.   The United  Nations estimates  that over 150  of
Afghanistan's  districts are  affected by  mines.    Mines are  a particular
problem on the country's borders, posing  special challenges for the process
of repatriating refugees.

10.   The  Mine  Clearance Programme  within the  United Nations  Office for
Humanitarian Assistance Coordination (UNOCHA) is the longest running  United
Nations-supported de-mining  programme.  There  are four  main components to
the  Programme:   clearance, clearance  training, mine-field  surveying  and
mineawareness  education.   The Programme  is implemented  by 2,925  workers
employed  by six  Afghan non-governmental  organizations,  one international
non-governmental organization and a relief agency  of the Government of  the
Islamic Republic of Iran.  These  organizations have clearly demarcated  the
division of labour by activity (i.e. training, awareness, clearance)  and/or
geography.    The Programme  continues  to  strive for  standardization  and
standard   operating   procedures  covering   technical,   operational   and
administrative  matters have  been published  and  are  followed by  the de-
mining organizations.

11.   Through  the  end of  1994, a  total of  109,754  mines were  cleared,
215,764  unexploded  ordnance devices  were  destroyed,  54  million  square
metres of  land were  made safe, and  about 2,497,400 people  received mine-
awareness briefings. The Programme's achievements in 1994 were double  those
of  1993, owing  in  large  part to  steady and  increased funding.   UNOCHA
estimates  that, at the rate sustained in 1994,  and with continued funding,
all priority  clearance will  be completed by the  end of 1997.   Up to June
1995,  mid-year targets  were exceeded:  17,048,240 square  metres  had been
surveyed  and  12,347,349  square  metres  cleared,  270,000  civilians  had
received mine-awareness  training and  1,555 field  staff basic or  revision

12.   In  1994, the  Programme, in  collaboration with  UNHCR, extended  its
mineawareness  activities to  Afghan  refugees returning  from  the  Islamic
Republic  of Iran.   Mine-awareness teams  are stationed at  the border exit
stations.  Working with UNOCHA, an ILO project  provided courses in 1994 for
personnel  responsible   for  training  trainers   of  mine  clearance   and
vocational  training  was   provided  to  those  who  were  disabled   while
conducting mine-clearance activities.  The project  was completed at the end
of 1994 and proposals to continue the work have not yet received funding.

13.   When months  of street  battles subsided in  Kabul in March  1995, the
Programme's  teams identified 252  new mine-contaminated locations over a 22
square  kilometre area of the city.  Of this area, some 10 square kilometres
have been categorized as high priority.   The return of refugees to the city

led to  a concurrent  rise in  the number  of land-mine  casualties:   1,500
alone in  the month of April,  according to ICRC.   The Programme  currently
has 10 mineclearance teams, 7 mine-survey teams and  5 dog teams working  in

14.   The  total budget  requirements for  the  Programme  for 1995  are US$
25,050,000.   With  $7,050,000 already  available, the  latest  consolidated
appeal, launched in October  1994, sought the remaining $18 million.  As  at
June 1995, $11,126,686 had been received in  response to the appeal.  At the
International  Meeting  on  Mine  Clearance (see  para.  3),  an  additional
$3,447,770  was pledged for  UNOCHA and  $625,000 was  pledged for treatment
and rehabilitation activities undertaken by WHO.

15.   The Programme's objectives for  1995 include providing  mine-awareness
education to 900,000 civilians,  on a budget of $900,000, and holding  eight
basic training courses for  240 students, eight pre-deployment courses, four
teamleader courses  for  80 students  and  four  additional courses  for  60
students, with  a budget of  $800,000.   Twenty minefield survey  teams will
operate in 20 provinces,  surveying 18 million square metres, on a budget of
$1,600,000.   The  mine-clearance  budget is  $19,450,000, providing  for 48
manual clearance teams  to operate in  19 provinces,  for a  target area  of
15,850,000 square metres.


16.   Angola is estimated to  have between nine  and 15 million  land-mines,
laid  during three decades of civil  war.  To  date, these mines have caused
as  many as  70,000 amputees.    Internally  displaced persons  and refugees
began  to return  after the  signing  of  the Lusaka  Protocol (S/1994/1441,
annex) in November  1994 making the task  of humanitarian de-mining  all the
more urgent.  Preparations  to conduct a  large-scale mine-action  programme
are now under  way.   The participation  of a number  of United Nations  and
non-governmental  organizations illustrates the importance  of a coordinated
and integrated programme. 

17.  In March  1994, the Central Mine  Action Office (CMAO)  was established
within the  framework  of the  Unit  for  the Coordination  of  Humanitarian
Assistance to  Angola (UCAH).   Until June  1995, CMAO had  been limited  to
coordination of mineawareness programmes and  the establishment of a general
coordination  structure,  including a  mine  database,  because  of  funding
delays.   In the  absence of peace,  gathering of  minefield information was
limited owing to concerns  by the Government and  the Uniao Nacional  para a
Independencia  Total   de  Angola  (UNITA)   that  such  information   would
compromise  their  security.    A  mine   survey  commenced  in  June  1995.
International  non-governmental   organizations  have   been  assisting   in
surveying  the  quartering areas  where Angolan  military  factions will  be
stationed.   By August 1995, 10 of the 14 quartering areas had been surveyed
for  mines.    Actual  de-mining  is   being  done  by  international   non-
governmental organizations,  UNAVEM III engineer  forces, government  forces
and UNITA.

18.   CMAO  has a planned operating  budget of $29,494,000 for  the first 12
months of operations, of which $17,089,800  is contributed through  assessed
contributions  and  a  further  $12,404,200  is  to  be  raised  through the
consolidated appeal.   Very little has been received in the appeal to date -
only  $1.2  million  -   but  a  number  of  Governments  indicated  at  the
International  Meeting  on Mine  Clearance  at  Geneva  that  they would  be
willing  to  support  specific  de-mining  projects.     The  Department  of
Humanitarian  Affairs is currently  working closely  with CMAO  to develop a
list of high-priority de-mining projects.

19.   CMAO, in  cooperation with  UNAVEM III,  will focus  on assisting  the
creation  of an  indigenous de-mining  capacity  through training  of  local
personnel in  different aspects of mine-clearance  operations as  well as in
managerial skills related to those operations.   The Mine Clearance Training
School is being staffed  and training of a  corps of Angolan  de-miners will

commence in  late 1995, if the  budget is approved in  due time.   There are
smaller,  temporary  minetraining schools  established  by  non-governmental
organizations at Kuito, Luena and Malanje.

20.  With the signing  of the Lusaka Protocol, the Government of Angola  has
assumed responsibility  for all land-mine-related  activities within Angola.
The Government  has  set  up  the  National  Institute for  the  Removal  of
Explosive Obstacles,  which  will be  responsible  for  the programme.    In
addition,  the   Government  has  designated   approximately  1,200   former
soldiers, from  both its  own and  UNITA forces,  to perform  mine-clearance

21.  WFP, in coordination with  UCAH, commenced mine-clearance activities in
early 1995 along major  transport corridors.  The  $2.4 million project  has
successfully opened  the Malanje-Luanda  and the  Kuito-Lobito roads to  the
free  movement of  people and trade,  as well as  to humanitarian assistance
deliveries that were  previously made by airlift.  This project included WFP
collaboration with  Norwegian People's  Aid to conduct  a six-week  training
session for 60 local de-miners and to undertake de-mining work in Malanje.

22.   Mine awareness,  coordinated by  the mine-awareness  officer in  CMAO,
began in September 1994,  conducted by UNICEF  and Angolan  non-governmental
organizations  using  national  media  and  messages  printed  on  bags  and
clothing.  At the same time,  UNHCR has developed a  mine-awareness training
programme, which will be implemented as  part of the repatriation  operation
for  Angolan   refugees.    A   number  of  international   non-governmental
organizations  are also  engaged in  mineawareness  activities.   CMAO  will
expand mine-awareness  programmes to cover  all refugee repatriation  camps,
internally  displaced  populations,  United  Nations  and   non-governmental
organization personnel, and affected Angolan communities.

23.   Mine-related medical  activities are  also being  undertaken by United
Nations agencies.   In cooperation with  the Government of Angola, WHO plans
to strengthen  the blood  bank in Luanda to  assure a safe blood  supply for
the expected  surge in mine victims, as  more and more  refugees return.  In
April 1995,  UNICEF established a programme  to assist children  traumatized
by land-mine injuries.


24.   Cambodia, which is infested  with 8 to 10 million  land-mines, has the
highest percentage  of amputees:   an estimated 1  out of  every 236 persons
has lost one  limb or worse.   The  Cambodia Mine  Action Centre (CMAC)  was
created  by  the  Government  in  1992  to  provide  an  integrated national
structure for  building  a counter-mine  capacity.    CMAC took  over  mine-
clearance   activities  from  the   de-mining  arm  of  the  United  Nations
Transitional Authority  in Cambodia (UNTAC),  which had conducted  de-mining
operations until the end  of its mandate.   The United Nations  continues to
be involved with the Cambodian programme  through the provision of technical
advice to CMAC.  This project, implemented by UNDP, will terminate in  April

25.  Through mid-1995, the Cambodian  mine-clearance programme has cleared a
total of  62,000 land-mines  and some  420,000 other  explosive devices,  or
16.5 million square  metres.  Over the past year, CMAC has cleared land more
rapidly and  more safely  than ever  before.   Each CMAC  platoon clears  an
estimated 500 to 1,000 square metres a day and by August 1995 de-miners  had
cleared 233  minefields.   With  the  exception  of 28  expatriate  military
personnel (to be decreased to  17 during 1995) and a  few experts from  non-
governmental organizations, the CMAC staff is entirely Cambodian.

26.   CMAC has held  323 mine-awareness classes,  attended by 56,482 people.
UNICEF  and UNESCO have  also been  engaged in  mine-awareness programmes in
Cambodia.   UNICEF provides support to  the Children  and Women's Prosthetic
and  Orthotic  Programme   of  the  Cambodia  Trust,  which  specializes  in
provision of artificial limbs to women and children.

27.    CMAC  operations  are  funded  through  voluntary  contributions,  in
response  to  an  appeal  issued  jointly  by  UNDP  and  the Department  of
Humanitarian Affairs in late  1993.  The appeal  sought $20 million  for the
two-year  period  from  April  1994  to  March 1996.    As  at  August 1995,
approximately $18 million was contributed or pledged.

28.   Unfortunately, the  conflict in  Cambodia continues  and the  National
Army  of Democratic Kampuchea  is still deploying  mines in  areas under its
control.   A disturbing sign  is recent evidence  that the  National Army of
Democratic Kampuchea is using home-made mines, constructed from  fertilizer,
lubricating oil  and nails, that are  as effective as  imported ones.   This
increases the scale of the land-mine problem in Cambodia.


29.  A United  Nations mission was conducted in June 1995, at the request of
the  Government  of  Chad,  to  assess  the  extent  of  the  mine  problem.
Consideration is now being given to possible activities.

El Salvador

30.  Shortly after  the Peace Agreements were  signed between the Salvadoran
Armed Forces and the Frente Farabundo  Marti para la Liberacion  Nacional in
January  1992, UNICEF initiated  a programme  designed to prevent accidental
deaths from  the estimated 20,000 mines  laid in the  country.  The  initial
thrust  of the Mine Awareness Programme (PAM) was to identify minefields and
to post  danger signs,  to educate  the population  in mined areas  to avoid
contact with  mines and  explosives, and  to support  efforts to  deactivate
mines.  At  the same time, the Government  of El Salvador  engaged a private
firm to undertake mine-clearance activities.   This was completed in January
1994.  While no  land-mine accidents have been reported since January  1994,
hand-grenades  and  other   explosive  devices  have  injured  271   people,
including  42 children.    As  a result  of  this new  development, the  PAM
Committee began  a second phase  of the  project to  rid El Salvador  of the
remaining explosive devices.  Throughout the 15-month period envisioned  for
PAM II, public education efforts have been renewed.

Former Yugoslavia

31.   It is estimated that  millions of land-mines have been  laid in Bosnia
and  Herzegovina  and in  Croatia.    The  United  Nations Protection  Force
(UNPROFOR) troops  are engaged in limited  de-mining activities  in order to
carry out  their mandate of providing  for access  for humanitarian convoys.
UNPROFOR also  provides some  supervision of  mine clearance  done by  local
forces in non-contested areas.

32.  With the Croatian Ministry of Education,  UNICEF has prepared a  manual
for teachers and  a video cassette for use  in schools and for broadcast  on
the  national  television  networks.   The  programme  has  already  reached
400,000 children in Croatia  and in Bosnia and  Herzegovina.  Prior  to that
initiative, children  were reported to  be collecting land-mines,  sometimes
with tragic results.


33.  In  August 1994, the  United Nations  undertook an assessment  mission,
which  estimated that there  were approximately  75,000 to  150,000 mines in
Abkhazia, with  more being  laid, and reported  two to  four mine  accidents
every week. Although the political situation in the  area did not yet  allow
the start of a  full-scale mine-clearance programme, the mission recommended
the immediate establishment of an information  and coordination capacity,  a
mine-awareness programme,  a mine survey, including  mine marking, and  low-
scale emergency  mineclearance.  The  1995 consolidated inter-agency  appeal
for the Caucasus  region included those activities  and sought funds in  the
amount of  approximately $900,000.  Thus  far, lack of funding and political

consent has delayed activities. 
  34.  As  part of the preparations for  the organized return of  internally
displaced  persons, UNHCR  printed  and  distributed mine-warning  materials
(produced  in both  Georgian and  Russian).   In December  1994 and  January
1995,  tens of thousands of  leaflets were distributed in schools and public
places in  and around the demarcation  and cease-fire  area between Abkhazia
and Georgia. There are  plans for a second project, modelled on the campaign
in Mozambique, to train mine-awareness educators  who will then prepare  all
200,000 refugees  inside Georgia for their  repatriation to  Abkhazia, and a
third  project to disseminate mine-awareness material to schools attended by
internally displaced children.


35.   In Guatemala, land-mines have  prevented refugees  from returning home
and  prevented  those   who  have  returned  from  initiating   agricultural
activities,  thus  extending  their  dependence  on   food  assistance.    A
comprehensive  mine-risk   reduction  programme   for  returnees,  including
marking and  education activities,  was initiated  in Guatemala  in 1994  by
UNHCR, local non-governmental  organizations and WFP,  with the armed forces
clearing mines in resettlement sites.

36.   UNHCR selected future returnees  to be trained  in mine awareness  and
mine detection.   The  returnees searched  out mines,  marked them  and then
informed  the Government  for  it to  dispose  of  them.   The  UNHCR-funded
segment  of the  programme  was  completed at  the  end of  1994.    UNHCR's
implementing  partner   has   continued  the   mine-marking  and   education
activities.    UNICEF has  also  conducted  some  mineawareness  activities,
modelled upon its successful El Salvador programme.


37.  Mozambique's 16-year  civil war has left  an estimated 2  million land-
mines spread throughout the nation.   Current information suggests there may
be  some 2,000  mined sites,  placed  as  defensive rings  around population
centres, on roads and paths, around  economic structures and in agricultural
fields.  In the first 18 months of peace, at least 1,000 people were  killed
by  mines.  There  are 8,000 amputees.   Mine  casualties account  for 4 per
cent  of  all  surgical  cases in  Mozambican  hospitals; that  4  per cent,
however, consumes up to 25 per cent of all surgical resources.

38.   Following the 1992  General Peace Agreement between  the Government of
Mozambique  and the  Resistencia Nacional  Mocambicana, the  United  Nations
Operation in  Mozambique  (ONUMOZ)  was  mandated  to  deal  with  military,
political,  electoral and  humanitarian  issues  - the  latter  through  its
humanitarian   component,  the   United  Nations  Office   for  Humanitarian
Assistance Coordination (UNOHAC).

39.    Delays  in  the  implementation  of   the  Mozambican  mine-clearance
programme provoked  criticism  from donor  countries.    In June  1994,  the
Department  of Humanitarian  Affairs established  the Accelerated  De-mining
Programme.   By November  1994, the Programme  had trained  and equipped 450
de-miners to clear mines in southern  Mozambique.  Following the  expiration
of the  peace-keeping mandate, the Programme  continued its  operations as a
joint  Department of  Humanitarian Affairs/UNDP  programme.  Apart  from the
mine-clearance activities,  the Accelerated De-mining  Programme focused  on
the  training  of  Mozambicans  in  supervision  and  management,  with  the
objective  of  having  its operations  eventually  run  completely  by local
personnel.  By August  1995, 5,000 mines, in an area totalling some  400,000
square metres, had been cleared.

40.  The  current Programme will continue until  January 1996.  Until  then,
it operates  on a total  budget of $2,502,149  and has  sufficient funds for
its operations.   If the  Programme is  to continue  to be  financed by  the
United Nations after January 1996, funds for its operations in 1996 will  be
needed. The  Department of  Humanitarian Affairs has  begun a review  of the

future of the Programme.

41.    Other United  Nations  bodies  are  also  involved in  mine-clearance
activities.  UNDP and  the  Department of  Humanitarian  Affairs,  through a
contracted  consortium,  undertook the  clearance  of  2,000  kilometres  of
priority  roads  from  1993  through  its completion  in  March  1995.   WFP
involvement with  emergency de-mining activities  in Mozambique began  prior
to the  establishment of UNOHAC, because of WFP involvement in food aid.  In
1995, WFP commenced  a $1 million  road project  that will  open, clear  and
repair important supply roads.

42.   The large  number of  Mozambicans in refuge  in neighbouring countries
meant  that mine-awareness activities were of critical  importance.  Between
1993 and  the end  of 1994, UNHCR  engaged in extensive  promotion of  mine-
awareness  activities   to  prepare  more  than  1.3  million  refugees  for
repatriation.  The UNHCR mine-awareness programme  was carried out with  the
assistance of Norwegian  People's Aid, to train  teachers to work with other
international  non-governmental organizations  to conduct mine  education in
refugee  camps and  locations in  the  four  major asylum  nations bordering
Mozambique (Malawi, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe).

43.   The Mozambique  de-mining effort includes  a number of  initiatives in
addition to those of  the United Nations, including programmes by the United
States of America, Norwegian People's Aid and Halo Trust.

44.   In May 1995, the  Government of Mozambique  created the National  Mine
Clearance Commission,  which will develop  overall policies, strategies  and
priorities for the Mozambican mine-action plan.


45.   When  some  semblance  of calm  returned  to Rwanda  in  1994,  UNICEF
discovered that children returning to Kigali  were encountering mines in and
around their homes and  schools.  Although UNICEF is rarely involved in mine
clearance, it  contracted  an Ethiopian  army  team  to clear  mines  around
schools and health centres to permit their reopening.

46.   In  collaboration with  UNESCO, UNICEF has  undertaken a  programme to
prepare  mine-awareness  messages  for  use  on  the  radio  and  to prepare
materials  for inclusion  in its  "School-in-a-Box" programme,  a  specially
adapted  education   package  for   use  in  emergency   situations.     The
UNICEF/UNESCO mine-awareness campaign  has already reached 720,000  Rwandans
between  the ages of 7 and  14.  It is planned to continue the campaign with
half-yearly repetition to ensure that the lessons are remembered.

47.  Prior  to 1994, Rwanda's  problem with  uncleared mines and  unexploded
ordnance was  located mainly  in the  northern parts  of the  country.   The
conflict in 1994 spread the mine problem throughout  the country.  In  1994,
the United Nations conducted an assessment  mission, to determine the extent
of  the problem and  whether the  provision of  international assistance was
necessary,  appropriate  and  possible.    As a  preliminary  response,  the
Department of  Humanitarian Affairs  has  proposed the  establishment of  an
information and coordination capacity to act as a focal point for all  land-
mine-related activity in the country, to  conduct liaison between the United
Nations and  the Government  of Rwanda  and to coordinate  mine surveys  and
mine marking.  The  United Nations is seeking the consent of the  Government
of Rwanda for such activities.  The Government is considering its options.


48.   There are an estimated one  million mines in Somalia, but,  as with so
many  humanitarian  activities  in the  country,  international mine-related
assistance has been limited by the  ongoing insecurity, despite the presence
of some Somali  national de-mining capacity.   Prior to  the United  Nations
formal withdrawal from Somalia early in  1995, the United Nations  Operation
in Somalia (UNOSOM) employed Somali mine-clearers to conduct  mine-clearance

activities   and  provided  training  as  appeared  necessary.    Since  the
departure   of  UNOSOM,   United  Nations   agencies  have   pursued   their
humanitarian  and  rehabilitation  activities  wherever security  conditions
have   permitted.     UNESCO  and   UNHCR  continue   implementation   of  a
mineawareness  programme,  covering 36  towns  and  villages  in  north-west
Somalia.    The  mine-awareness  package  developed by  UNESCO  for  Somalia
contains cloth charts, leaflets,  a video and other mine-warning educational


49.  In 1995, at the request of the Government of Yemen,  the United Nations
carried out  an assessment  mission, which  resulted  in the  creation of  a
programme  to advise  the  Government,  which has  responsibility  for  mine
clearance.    A  landmine  information  specialist provides  advice  to  the
Government on  safe and  reliable de-mining  methods and  is establishing  a
mine database to  be used by the Government  to better coordinate its  mine-
clearing activities.  The army  is estimated to have  removed between 23,000
and 50,000  mines.   The programme  is financed  by a contribution  from the
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to  the Voluntary Trust
Fund for Assistance in Mine Clearance.


50.   Land-mines not  only strike the individual  with their lethal effects,
but devastate  whole nations  by impeding  the restoration  of societal  and
economic  life in the  aftermath of  armed conflicts,  possibly for decades.
Thus,  the removal of  land-mines is  a prerequisite  for the rehabilitation
and reconstruction  of a  country.   Agriculture cannot  be revived  without
clearing the  land of  mines; transportation becomes  impossible because  of
mined roads  and tracks;  irrigation systems and critical  industries become
unusable because  of land-mines; and medical  systems are  overburdened.  It
is  this  impact on  all  social  and  economic activities  that  makes mine
clearance  and other  land-minerelated activities  an integral  part of  the
post-conflict peace-building  phase of a  nation.  International  assistance
in  mine clearance,  to be  truly successful, has  to orient  its activities
within this context.  From the very outset  of the provision of  assistance,
the concept within which  it operates must be  focused on the restoration of
an environment that allows a society to regain normal life.

51.  This requires, firstly, the recognition that only a sustainable,  long-
term  mine-clearance  programme,  including  all  related  activities,  will
achieve this goal.   This is why the  United Nations approach  to assistance
in  mine clearance focuses on national capacity-building.  Secondly, because
of  the impact of  landmines on  practically every  level of  the political,
economic and social institutions of a  country, programmes for assistance in
mine clearance must be  designed to deal  with the problem in its  totality,
addressing  all  dimensions   of  the  problem  simultaneously  and  in   an
integrated and coordinated manner.

52.   Mine awareness without  mine clearance only delays  accidents, it does
not prevent them.   Mine clearance without mine-awareness programmes  allows
needless deaths  to continue.   Mine  surveys help  to prioritize  clearance
activities and are also a good way to  educate local populations.  To lessen
the suffering,  to minimize  the burden  on the  health care  system and  to
improve  communication with  de-miners,  mine-awareness messages  should  be
part of basic elementary school curricula  and part of agricultural training
programmes.   Knowledge of the  appropriate care for mine injuries should be
part of the basic medical and health  care structures.  Not only  is medical
treatment  critical  for victims  of  mine  accidents,  but the  information
gathered from hospitals gives an early  indication of those populations most
at  risk.  Mine  clearance provides  employment where  employment is limited
owing to mined land and infrastructure.

53.  However, the  reality is that, in  the countries where these programmes
have  occurred thus far,  the basic  infrastructure of  schools, health care
programmes and training  programmes are  scarcely functioning.   This  means
the  building of national  capacity is  necessary in a wide  range of areas.
Thus, United  Nations policy, wherever assistance  is provided,  is to train
local  personnel in all  aspects of  mine clearance  and related activities,
and  to establish an indigenous  mine-clearance capacity.   This is the most
successful,  most sustainable  and most  cost-effective method  of  tackling
large-scale de-mining operations.

A.  Elements of mine-action programmes

54.  The  creation and implementation of a  national programme is a  complex
task,  because of  the number  of actors  involved and  the sensitivity  and
importance of assistance activities.   Coordination is necessary between the
host Government, the different United Nations  entities with their  distinct
mandates,  United  Nations peace-keeping  forces, various  international and
local non-governmental  organizations, bilateral aid  missions and, in  many
cases, former rebel forces.

 55.  Since a  Government has primary  responsibility for the safety of  its
citizens,  it  must remain  the  primary  participant  in  the planning  and
execution  of   a  programme.    In  situations  where  national  government
structures are relatively weak, as in  a post-conflict setting, ensuring the
integration  of the mine-action  plan within  a Government  is difficult but
essential for the sustainability of the mine-clearance efforts.

1.  Creation of a national capacity

56.   As  the  United  Nations plan  is  being conceived,  the  transfer  of
management of  operations  from a  United Nations-supported  programme to  a
national  organization  and  from  expatriate  to  national  staff  must  be
priority objectives.  In Cambodia,  the United  Nations de-mining  programme
focused  almost  exclusively on  the  training  of  de-miners.   The  United
Nations  peace-keeping  forces  had  no  mandate  to  create  an  indigenous
capacity.   Therefore, as UNTAC prepared  to depart, the  need for a  strong
central mine-clearance  administrative structure  with Cambodian  management
was further  reinforced.    As  a result  of  this  lack of  foresight,  the
transition  from the  UNTAC de-mining  programme to  the Cambodian  civilian
programme  that   eventually  evolved  was   difficult,  though   ultimately

57.   With the Cambodian  lesson in mind,  the Angola  and Mozambique peace-
keeping  operations  had the  creation of  a  national indigenous  de-mining
capacity, including the establishment of a centralized de-mining  structure,
as a mandated objective.  In Mozambique, the  creation of an indigenous  de-
mining capacity was centred in the  United Nations humanitarian agencies  in
order  to avoid  later difficulties  with  the  transfer from  the primarily
military culture  of the  United Nations peace-keeping forces  to Mozambican
civilians and national control.

58.  While this particular programme was not  very successful in its initial
phase,  the  United Nations  learned the  importance  of a  better-developed
headquarters  and field  structure to  support a  more sizeable organization
than was then available.  In Angola, the  United Nations also established an
assistance programme within its humanitarian office.

59.  Since Cambodia,  there has been increased  emphasis on the  training of
management and administrative staff.  While  the management of the programme
will initially be  handled by expatriate  personnel, concurrent  training is
provided  to  their  local  counterparts  in  all  managerial,   logistical,
financial and administrative tasks of a programme.  In  Mozambique, there is
an  ongoing training  programme for  management staff.   It  is intended  to
follow the same path in Angola.

60.   It  is  worth  noting that  working with  national authorities  is not
always possible,  as in Afghanistan, where  no central  authority existed at
the commencement of the  United Nations de-mining programme.   Instead of  a
national central mine entity,  a number of  independent, cooperative  Afghan
organizations were created.   With growing political stability,  discussions
will take place  as to how  to interface  with national  authorities on  the
future of the ongoing programme.

 61.  An additional advantage of the national  capacity approach is that the
cost is  much  lower when  local  personnel  are responsible  for  de-mining
activities  - an  expatriate de-miner  may cost  30 times  that of  a  local
worker.    Hiring  local  de-miners  also  provides  much-needed  employment
opportunities in economies that are just  recovering from war.  In addition,
bringing former  enemies together  in de-mining  teams can  be  a small  but
significant confidence-building measure, teaching citizens of a nation  once
again to work together.

62.   The establishment of  a national  mine-action plan will  encourage, or
even demand,  common standards, procedures  and techniques.   Implementation
of standard procedures  at the outset facilitates monitoring, evaluation and
identification of  common shortcomings.   The importance of  standardization
was highlighted  in Cambodia, where  international de-mining experts  coming
from various nations brought different training and clearance techniques  to
the classroom and to  the field.  Even  when common materials  were provided
to the schools, each  school provided a slightly  different approach to  de-
mining, based in large part upon the nationality of the expatriate  trainer.
In the  subsequent creation  of a  unified national  de-mining force,  units
that  should have been  interchangeable could not work effectively together.
Eventually common techniques and standards were agreed upon.

63.  In Mozambique,  the United Nations addressed this problem by creating a
single de-mining training  school for all United Nations-trained  de-miners.
Norwegian People's  Aid  used the  same  curriculum  as the  United  Nations
school, because  both were relying on  curriculum developed  in Cambodia for
manual de-mining  techniques.   Angola  will  have  the standardized  school
approach, although, because of  the size of the  country, there may  be more
than  one training  site, with  a  staff  member specifically  designated to
ensure standardized training.   Drawing  upon experience and expertise  from
United  Nations  de-mining  programmes  in  Afghanistan  and  Cambodia,  the
Departments  of  Peace-keeping  Operations  and   Humanitarian  Affairs  are
further  developing   standardized  curricula  and  training  programmes  of
instruction for de-miners, which will be available to any organization.

2.  Mine surveys

64.   As a  programme commences, a  comprehensive mine survey  is needed  to
assess  the extent  of the  problem throughout  the country  and to  provide
minefield  marking to  warn local populations.   The results  of the general
survey form the basis  for determining the appropriate size and form of  the
mine-clearance programme and for establishing priorities for mine  clearance
and mine-awareness activities.   The general survey  is usually a  basis for
later detailed  surveys to  establish as  accurately as  possible the  exact
dimensions of  each minefield  or mined area,  so that  clearance teams  can
work  efficiently.    The  critical component  of  the  mine survey  is  the
effective storage, dissemination and utilization of  the collected data.  In
a  United Nations  mine-clearance programme,  all available  information  is
collected at the central mine office, where a mine database is set up and  a
detailed master mine map is compiled.

65.    Mine  surveys  have  been  carried  out  using  both  expatriate  and
indigenous  surveyors.   Detailed surveying  is  a  slow and  hazardous job,
requiring  advanced skills  in mine  clearance,  as  well as  proficiency in
cartography.   This,  perhaps, explains the widespread  use of international
organizations, which  can commence surveying  immediately and quickly  start
up  a  programme.    In  Mozambique  and  Cambodia,  one  international non-

governmental  organization  conducted the  entire survey;  and  in Angola  a
number of  different  international  agencies are  conducting parts  of  the
survey, under the overall coordination of CMAO.

66.   A different  approach was  used in  Afghanistan.   The United  Nations
provided training  to Afghans on  how to  conduct a survey.   They were then
sent to their home districts, where  they collected information and returned
to the United  Nations, where they received training  on how to process  the
data collected.  After being trained  to conduct  a detailed  survey and  to
mark  minefields,  the general  surveyors  were  subsequently sent  back  to
collect  more information.   An  Afghan non-governmental  organization  that
specializes in surveys was  formed out of  the participants in the  training

3.  Education and training in mine awareness

67.   The  primary objective  of  a mine-awareness  education is  to protect
people from becoming mine  casualties.  To that end, populations at risk are
taught how  to identify land-mines, how to mark and report  them, and how to
minimize  their chances  of becoming  victims  while  living and  working in
mined areas.  An effective mine-awareness  programme requires both the right
message and  the right  medium.   While  the content  of the  mine-awareness
message is  important, the  manner in  which  the message  is conveyed  will
determine whether it confuses,  educates or empowers.   Specific information
as to  the types and likely  locations of mines,  including shape, size  and
colour, should be provided where possible  and training materials should  be
specifically  adapted for  the culture,  ethnicity, religion and  customs of
the target population.

68.    Experience  shows that  community-based training  activities are most
effective.   In  the mine-awareness  project  in  El Salvador,  UNICEF  used
religious  leaders,  teachers,  doctors  and  non-governmental  organization
staff in regular contact  with the rural population who had relationships of
trust  and mutual  respect  and  were  thus  in  a position  to  communicate
effectively with large numbers of people.  A  similar technique was used  to
educate Mozambican  refugees. UNHCR selected  a special personality  profile
of  refugees  for  training  as  mineawareness  instructors.    The  profile
included proficiency in Portuguese as well as one of the local languages.

69.   Integration of mine-awareness education  into the overall  mine-action
programme  structure   and  further  coordination   of  the   mine-awareness
programmes is the  key.  A  fully integrated  approach has  yet to occur  at
more than  a  local level,  although CMAO  has a  mine-awareness officer  to
ensure coordination  between involved agencies.   As a long-term  objective,
mine-awareness  education  must  also  be  integrated  into  the   country's
education system  in order  to teach people  in affected areas  how to  live
with  mines.  Eventually,  mine awareness  must be  decentralized to install
local officials as the repositories of knowledge and awareness.

 70.   A number  of  United  Nations entities  and other  organizations  are
actively  involved   in  mine-awareness   activities.     Their  experiences
demonstrate that  local conditions  greatly influence  the  design of  mine-
awareness  campaigns   and  that  general   parameters  for  the   effective
establishment of  such  campaigns have  yet to  be identified.   The  expert
panel on  mine-awareness  education  at the  International Meeting  on  Mine
Clearance (see  para. 3) should be  seen as the initiation  of a process  of
bringing  together  experts  from various  organizations  in  this  field to
consider a  more coordinated  approach to the  problem.   The Department  of
Humanitarian  Affairs  is  currently gathering  all  available  information,
curricula and so on on the issue.   This library of compiled information may
serve  as a  basis for  further expert  discussions to  be convened  by  the

4.  Treatment and rehabilitation of land-mine victims

71.   Land-mines are  often designed  to wound  and maim, rather  than kill.
Medical  treatment of land-mine  victims is  at best  a short-term solution,
which  is  unfortunately  far  beyond  the  capacity  of  most mine-affected
States.  Land-mine injuries  place a huge burden on health care systems that
are  least  equipped  to  handle them.    Often,  health  care  systems  are
devastated by  war  and  the presence  of mines  continues  to hinder  their
rehabilitation,  as mined roads  inhibit movement  of medicines, health care
professionals and vaccination teams.

72.  The  long and arduous physical  rehabilitation therapy and the  regular
replacement of  prostheses is a cost, both physical and financial, that many
victims  are  unable  to  meet,  but  use  of a  prosthesis  can  contribute
substantially to the return  of the amputee  as a functioning member of  the
family and  community.  United Nations  efforts at rehabilitation  recognize
that physical  and psychological rehabilitation must be combined with social
and economic reintegration  through income-generating activities and  social

73.    There is  continuing  development  and  standardization  of the  most
effective  medical  treatment  for  land-mine victims  and  of  training for
paramedics.  Ongoing  discussions as to the  most useful form of  prosthetic
devices  parallel   strenuous  efforts  to   make  the  prosthetic   devices
accessible and  affordable to  amputees. As  with other  aspects of a  mine-
action  programme, it is  critical to  nurture indigenous  capacities in the
manufacturing and fitting of prostheses and in rehabilitation therapy.

74.   All  United  Nations  mine-clearance programmes  have  provisions  for
medical  evacuation and  paramedics  attached to  each team  or site.   This
often means  that the de-mining  team has  more medical facilities  than the
local community within which it operates.   Although neither paramedics  nor
the team's transport can  be made available to  the community at the expense
of preparedness for accidents at the site of de-mining, the de-mining  teams
will often  work  with the  local  community  to provide  medical  services.
Aside from  providing much needed medical  care, these  activities create an
important link  between de-mining  activities and  the  local community,  in
turn  increasing mine awareness  among the  community and  ensuring that de-
miners have the full cooperation of the community.

B.  Coordination of activities

75.   Addressing  a land-mine  problem  in  a comprehensive  and  integrated
manner requires effective coordination.  Lack  of coordination will lead  to
duplication of effort or  lack of attention to  a particular aspect and will
diminish the  outcome of the programme  for the affected  country.  A  great
deal remains to be done to coordinate the  activities of the various  United
Nations bodies better and  to tap fully their knowledge and resources in the
conduct  of mine-action programmes.  Experience has led  to certain de facto
working  arrangements within the  United Nations  system in  the creation of
programmes  and the provision  of mine-related  assistance.   Both UNHCR and
UNICEF have developed  substantial institutional expertise in the  provision
of mine-awareness  training, WHO  clearly has the capacity  for coordinating
mine-related medical  support and UNDP has  developed some  ad hoc expertise
in  the administration  and management  of  programmes.   The  Department of
Peace-keeping Operations, in cooperation with interested Member States,  has
developed a substantial mine-clearance training capacity.

76.    There  are  other  organizations  that  have  developed  considerable
expertise,  some  of  which   have  worked  closely   with  United   Nations
programmes.   ICRC is  active in  treatment and  rehabilitation of land-mine
victims,  as are  some  non-governmental organizations,  while  others  have
conducted mine-awareness programmes, mine-clearance  training, mine  surveys
and mine clearance.

77.   Direct Government-to-Government assistance, while rare, should also be
coordinated with United Nations programmes.

78.    It  has  fallen  upon  the  Department  of  Humanitarian  Affairs  to
coordinate these  capacities in  designing and  implementing United  Nations
programmes.   To  enhance  this  cooperation  further, the  Department  will
develop more  formal  working arrangements  with  all  parties in  order  to
outline more  clearly the  role each agency  will play in  the provision  of
assistance in mine clearance.

79.   The Department  of Humanitarian Affairs  drew upon  experience when it
established  CMAO  in  Angola, investing  it  with  responsibility  for  the
coordination of all  mine-related activities in the  country.  To that  end,
the Office  liaises with the Government,  coordinates the  operations of the
UNAVEM III training school  and the deployment of  the students who graduate
from  it  and  will  make  arrangements  for  the  school  to  continue  its
operations  after the end  of the  peace-keeping mandate.   CMAO coordinates
all mine-awareness activities in Angola, whether  they are being carried out
by  United Nations  agencies  or  non-governmental organizations.   It  will
prioritize  clearance   operations,  in   consultation   with  the   various
implementing  agencies,  and  will seek  continued  donor  support  for  all
activities in  concert with all  involved parties.   This may prove  to be a
model to be adapted for future programmes.


80.   Once a  land-mine problem  has been  identified and  the provision  of
assistance has been approved by the host Government and the United  Nations,
large  amounts of  funds are critical,  especially at the  commencement of a
programme.   Immediate access to funds allows early mine-awareness education
programmes, the prompt establishment of mine-clearance training schools  and
the timely procurement  of equipment.  These  start-up costs are  often very
high,  because a de-mining  programme may  need to create almost  all of its
own infrastructure.  It must have its own communication system, procure  the
necessary   equipment   for  mine-clearance   activities   and   ensure  the
availability of medical equipment and expertise to deal with mine injuries.

81.   Funds for  United Nations mine-clearance  and other  land-mine-related
activities  are generally  raised and  will  continue  to be  raised through
assessed  contributions  for  peace-keeping   operations  and  through   the
consolidated appeal process.  In my last report  (A/49/357 and Add.1 and 2),
I  emphasized the need to  obtain additional resources  in order to increase
the number  of countries  that could receive  United Nations  mine-clearance
assistance  and  to  enhance significantly  the overall  United  Nations de-
mining programme capacity.  Accordingly, on  30 November 1994, I established
the Voluntary  Trust Fund for Assistance in Mine Clearance and entrusted the
Department of Humanitarian Affairs with its management.

A.  Consolidated inter-agency appeal process

82.  In  countries that are facing  complex emergencies, funds are generally
raised through  consolidated inter-agency appeals,  including resources  for
landmine  programmes.  Consolidated  appeals will  remain a  main source for
financing such  programmes.  To  date, projects  have been  included in  the
consolidated  appeals for  Afghanistan,  Angola, the  Caucasus,  the  former
Yugoslavia and Rwanda.

B.  Assessed peace-keeping contributions

83.   In Cambodia,  Somalia, Mozambique  and now  Angola, the  peace-keeping
forces were  mandated  to  carry  out mine-clearance  operations  and  their
budgets included funds for mine  action.  In Cambodia,  UNTAC, trained local
de-miners  who,  following the  expiration  of  the  peace-keeping  mandate,
became the core of  the CMAC staff.   In Angola, the peace-keeping operation
will set up  a mine-clearance training school  in cooperation with CMAO  and
will equip and  field the students.  In the  first stage,  graduates of  the

school will  carry out  mine clearance  for the  needs of the  peace-keeping
operation.   In the  long run, they  will become  the core  of the  national
humanitarian mine-action  programme.  This  linkage between a  peace-keeping
operation and  a humanitarian programme is  of critical  importance. This is
why it  will be extremely advantageous  for future peace-keeping  operations
to  continue  to  include  resources  for  the  early  establishment  of  an
integrated de-mining  programme.  It  is also  important to link  the peace-
keeping  mine-clearance activities  closely  to the  humanitarian activities
from the  very beginning, to ensure a coordinated approach  to the land-mine
problem  and the continuance of mine-related activities following the peace-
keeping mandate.
  C.  Voluntary Trust Fund for Assistance in Mine Clearance

84.   The start  of programmes  has often  been delayed  because of  lack of
quick access to promised funds from  consolidated appeals and regular peace-
keeping assessments.    The Voluntary  Trust  Fund  for Assistance  in  Mine
Clearance has become the central tool  for financing mine-action  activities
in a timely and  effective manner, as it  is designed  to have a balance  of
funds readily available for quick utilization.

85.   The purpose  of the Trust  Fund is to  facilitate, in particular,  the
launching of mine-clearance operations.  It  is during the establishment  of
mineaction programmes  that most  costs occur.   It  is therefore  essential
that  the  Trust  Fund  have  sufficient resources  to  provide  mine-action
programmes with  the necessary  start-up finances  when other  resources are
not immediately available. Seed money, or  start-up funds, are required  for
such   activities   as   the  establishment   of   field-level  coordination
mechanisms, the  creation of  a systematic  capacity to  gather and  collate
mine information, mine surveys, the establishment  of a training school, the
early procurement  of mine-clearance  equipment, mine-awareness  programmes,
key  clearance operations  and  rehabilitation activities.    For  all these
activities the  Trust Fund  functions as  a complementary  mechanism to  the
above-mentioned funding  sources.  In addition to its utility as seed money,
the  Fund may be  used for  assessment missions, bridging  of funding delays
during   implementation   of   a   programme,   publicawareness   campaigns,
headquarters support and the expansion of existing programmes.

86.  One  of the objectives of the  International Meeting on Mine  Clearance
was  to solicit funds for the  Trust Fund.  Strong support was expressed for
the financing  of land-mine-related activities  and it  was gratifying  that
over  $20 million  was pledged  to the  Fund.   A number  of  countries also
indicated willingness  to  make contributions  to  it  in the  near  future.
While a great deal more funding is needed  to meet all the pressing  demands
for  assistance  in mine  clearance,  these  contributions  will enable  the
United Nations  to  initiate and  support  de-mining  operations in  a  more
timely and effective manner.

87.  Since its  inception in November  1994, only  a few projects have  been
financed  from the  Trust Fund, as  the contributions received  prior to the
International Meeting on Mine Clearance were  limited.  With a  contribution
of $150,000 from the United Kingdom,  the Department of Humanitarian Affairs
set up  a programme  to provide  technical advice  in mine clearance  to the
Government of  Yemen.   Two specialists  were sent  to Yemen  to gather  all
available  information  on land-mines  in  that  country and  to  set  up  a
database.   They  also advised the Government  on mine-clearance operations.
In May  1995,  the Department  of  Humanitarian  Affairs funded  a  research
project on the socio-economic impact of  land-mines.  Contributions from New
Zealand and  the  United Kingdom  provided  the  necessary funding  for  the
establishment of  the Mine Clearance and  Policy Unit  within the Department
of Humanitarian Affairs.

88.   In the  coming  months,  the priority  of United  Nations  mine-action
activities  will  be  the furtherance  of  the  comprehensive  programme  in
Angola.   In February  1995, a  consolidated inter-agency  appeal for Angola
was launched, including  mine-action projects that require $12.4 million for
a  12-month   period.    While  these   projects  will   be  funded  through

contributions towards  the appeal,  the Department  of Humanitarian  Affairs
will provide  the resources for priority  projects from  the Voluntary Trust
Fund to  ensure that the comprehensive  programme for  Angola is implemented
in a timely manner.

89.  The value of the Trust Fund cannot be overestimated.   As the number of
mine-clearance programmes  will continue to grow  over the  coming years and
as those  already in  operation will require  funds for a  long time, it  is
most important to sustain this tool  through enduring financial support from
the  international community.   Therefore, those Member States who indicated
support at  the International  Meeting are urged  to continue to  do so  and
those who have not yet made a contribution are urged to consider doing so.

90.   The Department of  Humanitarian Affairs will,  in accordance  with the
terms  of  reference  of  the  Trust  Fund,  issue  annual  reports  on  its
operation, describing  projects financed from  it and prioritizing  projects
to  be funded  in the  coming 12  months.   The Department  of  Humanitarian
Affairs  will, on  the basis  of the  utilization  of  the Trust  Fund, seek
resources for its replenishment on an annual basis.

D.  De-mining standby capacity

91.   The establishment of  comprehensive indigenous programmes requires, in
particular in  the first  stages, a  large number  of  expert personnel  and
specialized equipment.  In-kind contributions from  Member States have  been
an  important asset  to all  three  major  mine-clearance programmes  of the
United Nations.   In  Afghanistan, personnel  seconded by  Member States  to
work  with UNOCHA  began pioneering  the mine-clearance  and  mine-awareness
training methods that have since become  normal operating procedures for the
United  Nations.  In  Cambodia, this  experience was  repeated when military
personnel  contributed to  UNTAC  established de-mining  schools  and  began
training  indigenous  de-miners.  Following  the  expiration  of  the  UNTAC
mandate, expatriate expert personnel  seconded to the  United Nations helped
run CMAC.  In Mozambique, again,  military personnel from four Member States
established  and ran  the Mine  Clearance  Training  School.   Following the
expiration  of the  peace-keeping  mandate in  Mozambique,  five  expatriate
staff  contributed to  the  United Nations  established the  Accelerated De-
mining  Programme.  In Angola, a  de-mining school is being set up by UNAVEM
III.  Troop contributions from  Member States will staff  this school, which
will become the core of the mine-clearance programme in Angola.

92.     However,  while   mechanisms  and   structures  to   facilitate  the
contribution of personnel, equipment and expert  advice have been most fully
developed  in   the  context   of  troop   contributions  to   peace-keeping
operations, this is not  the case in other  United Nations operations.  This
is particularly  relevant to United  Nations humanitarian programmes,  which
are sometimes established  in areas  where no  peace-keeping mandate  exists
(e.g.  Afghanistan) or  are  required  to  continue  after  a  peace-keeping
mandate  ends (e.g.  Cambodia, Mozambique).   In  the past, this  has caused
considerable  problems  and  delays  in  creating the  necessary  legal  and
administrative arrangements to  permit donor States to contribute  personnel
and other resources to United Nations programmes.

 93.    It  was  for  this  reason  that  the  Secretary-General  asked  the
Department of Humanitarian Affairs to establish  a standby capacity for  de-
mining  and other  land-mine-related activities.    Such a  standby capacity
would  allow the United Nations to draw more  effectively upon the resources
of personnel,  facilities, equipment, and services  that are available  from
Member States for such programmes.

94.  The following elements could be furnished by in-kind contributions:


95.  Experts  are needed to  assist in  training local personnel in  all the

aspects  of a  programme.   There  is  also a  need for  personnel or  units
capable of being deployed to accomplish  specific tasks, such as  conducting
assessment  missions,  mine  survey  and  reconnaissance,  providing medical
support to mine-clearance operations,  establishing communications  networks
or conducting a variety of training missions.


96.   The  provision of  appropriate vehicles  and communication  equipment,
medical supplies and hospital equipment and  so on will significantly reduce
the  start-up costs.   Specialized  mine-clearance equipment  that meets the
standards set by the United Nations is also  required.  Such equipment could
include  mine  detectors,  prodders,  personal  protective  gear,  grapnels,
detonators and explosive charges. The provision  of equipment to support the
deployment of  de-mining platoons,  such as  tents, water trailers,  cooking
gear,  blankets,  clothing  and  beds,  will  eliminate  the  need  for such
equipment to be  bought by the programmes  themselves and therefore speed up


97.   The designation of  facilities within  a donor  State could also  be a
valuable  contribution.   The provision  of facilities  for the  specialized
training  of key  personnel would  provide  a  flexible method  of improving
their training.   In  addition, Member  States could  provide facilities  to
allow  for testing  and analysis  of  mine-clearance  equipment, as  well as
research  and development  establishments to  work  directly in  support  of
United Nations programmes.

98.  At the International Meeting on Mine  Clearance, the establishment of a
United  Nations de-mining  standby capacity  was considered  at  the plenary
session.   Four  Governments  announced  specific  contributions,  worth  $7
million, to  the standby capacity.   An additional  15 Governments announced
their   willingness  to   contribute.     These  announced   and   indicated
contributions  included   the  provision  of   expert  training   personnel,
equipment, the  provision of training  facilities, facilities for  treatment
of land-mine victims and the provision of mineclearance teams.

99.   Details  of contributions  to  the  United Nations  de-mining  standby
capacity will be kept  in the United Nations Land-Mine Database, which has a
specific  module for the  purpose.   The Department  of Humanitarian Affairs
will now set up the necessary legal and administrative  arrangements to make
the standby capacity fully operational and  will consult with Governments on
the detailed requirements for this standby capacity.


100.   Over the course of the past  few years and as  a result in large part
of  the  work  of  the  Secretariat  and  several  United  Nations agencies,
international  awareness  of the  global  land-mine  crisis  and  consequent
support  for  the  minerelated  activities  of  the  Organization has  risen
significantly.  However, during the past  year, approximately 100,000  land-
mines were  removed, while between  2 and 5  million mines  were newly laid.
These  figures   emphasize  that  this  is  not  a  static  problem,  but  a
humanitarian crisis that is  growing rapidly.  They  also indicate that mine
clearance alone,  even at the  increased rate that  it is  hoped to achieve,
will  not solve the problem.  Equally important  are increased and concerted
political efforts to stop the further proliferation of land-mines.

101.  The political  goal to halt the  further spread of land-mines requires
increased action in the field  of public advocacy.   Increasing knowledge of
this  enormous humanitarian  crisis will  prepare the  ground for  effective
political  and   legal  initiatives  to  solve   it.     The  Department  of
Humanitarian Affairs is  well placed to fulfil  this role and to  coordinate
system-wide activities  in this area.   In concert with other United Nations

organizations,  the  Department  of  Humanitarian  Affairs  will  develop  a
strategy of public advocacy initiatives.

102.    An  important  landmark  in  the  Organization's  efforts  to  raise
international  awareness of  the  land-mine problem  was  the  International
Meeting on  Mine Clearance  (see  para. 3).    The  fact that  this  Meeting
brought  together almost  100  Governments  and 60  organizations shows  the
growing consciousness of the  land-mine crisis.  It was the first time  that
so many politicians and  experts from all over  the world had  discussed the
land-mine issue in all its dimensions.

103.    Several important  political  issues  were  raised  at the  Meeting.
Almost all participating  delegations emphasized the need for  strengthening
international humanitarian law to stop the  further spread of these weapons.
In particular,  most delegations pointed to  the importance  of the upcoming
review conference  of the States parties  to the  Convention on Prohibitions
or  Restrictions on  the Use  of Certain  Conventional Weapons Which  May Be
Deemed  to Be  Excessively  Injurious  or to  Have  Indiscriminate  Effects,
Protocol II of which deals  with the use of land-mines  and booby traps, and
the urgent need to  strengthen its provisions. In the meetings of the  group
of government experts to prepare the  review conference, several key  issues
such  as the  applicability of  the  Convention  to internal  conflicts, the
detectability  of all  anti-personnel mines  and  the requirement  that  all
remotely  delivered  mines  must  contain  self-destructing  mechanisms were
agreed upon.    It is  hoped  that they  will  be  included in  the  revised
Convention.  However, other important issues  remain to be resolved. Efforts
must be made at the review conference to  strengthen the Convention and  the
land-mine Protocol  by adding  strong enforcement  provisions, by  achieving
meaningful  restrictions on  the  transfer of  land-mines,  their  component
parts and land-mine technology; by  including obligatory agreement to permit
inspections  to determine  compliance  and appropriate  sanctions  for  non-
compliance.  Also, strong legal protections should be added to article  VIII
of Protocol  II, extending  its provisions  to cover humanitarian  personnel
working in mined areas.   The Convention  should also include provisions  to
institutionalize its review.

104.    Most  delegations  at  the  International  Meeting  agreed  that the
Convention  would only be a viable tool if all  Member States adhered to its
provisions.  So far, only 50 Member States are party to the Convention. 

105.  Another important issue that was  commonly mentioned by delegations at
the International  Meeting was the question  of export  moratoriums on land-
mines.  This is the  third year that the issue will  be on the agenda of the
General Assembly.  In its resolutions 48/75 K of 16 December 1993 and  49/75
D of 15 December  1994, the Assembly  called on Member States to agree  to a
moratorium  on  the export  of anti-personnel  land-mines  and urged  Member
States to  implement such a moratorium.  So far, only some 20 countries have
enacted   an  export   moratorium.     Some   countries  indicated   at  the
International Meeting that they would implement such a moratorium shortly.

106.   Notwithstanding the  importance of  these efforts,  it is  emphasized
once  again that  the ultimate goal must  be a total ban  on the production,
transfer  and use of land-mines.   Only a total  ban will stop their spread.
A ban is easier to implement and easier to monitor and verify.   Moreover it
would  guarantee,  more than  any  other  measure, that  the  indiscriminate
killing and maiming of  innocent civilians will eventually  cease.  A number
of countries and organizations called for such a  ban in their statements at
the International Meeting.   Some referred to  this as the ultimate goal  or
the desired  objective towards which the  United Nations  should work, while
others considered that the time had already come for such action.

107.   In  the past  few decades,  the use  of land-mines  has changed  from
strictly defensive to offensive and they are  being used, in particular,  to
terrorize civilian  populations.  In  low-intensity and low-budget  internal
conflicts, landmines have  become a weapon of  choice because they are  both
cheap and  effective.  In this  connection, it  would be  an important  step

forward   to  extend  the   applicability  of  the  Convention  to  internal
conflicts.  However, in most internal  conflicts, some of which  have lasted
for  decades (e.g. Angola,  Cambodia, Mozambique),  it will  be difficult to
determine compliance with  the provisions of the  Convention.  Only a  total
ban would eliminate  the further use of these  weapons.  The random use  and
long-lasting effects of  land-mines put them in  the category of those which
kill and maim indiscriminately.   In this connection, attention  is drawn to
the  Convention   on  the  Prohibition   of  the  Development,   Production,
Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their  Destruction, which was
signed in Paris  in January 1993.  This  Convention has set a precedent  for
meaningful  restrictions  on  these kinds  of  weapons.   Article  I of  the
Convention  binds  States never  to  develop,  produce,  otherwise  acquire,
stockpile or retain or transfer chemical weapons and never to use them.

108.  Non-governmental organizations have been  an essential element of  the
international campaign to stop  the further proliferation  of land-mines and
have played a strong  role in public advocacy on  the issue.  One example is
the International Campaign to Ban Land-Mines,  which comprises more than 300
organizations  from all  over the  world.   The  United Nations  should seek
closer cooperation with non-governmental organizations in this field.

109.   The United  Nations approach  to a land-mine problem  is based on the
principle  of capacity-building.   The  responsibility to  clear  land-mines
rests ultimately  with the  Government of  an affected  country.   Moreover,
mine-clearance programmes  are likely to continue  for decades.   The United
Nations is  therefore assisting Governments  to create sustainable  national
capacities that will  continue as national  development programmes after the
directsupport for mineactionprogrammes throughthe UnitedNations has ceased.

110.   Land-mines affect  all sectors of  societal and economic  life.   The
United  Nations,   therefore,  follows  an   integrated  approach  to   mine
clearance, addressing  the problem  in its  various facets  and involving  a
number  of agencies  of the  United  Nations  system.   To consolidate  this
approach, it  is essential to  have one central  office responsible  for the
coordination of  all activities related to  mine clearance.   The Department
of  Humanitarian  Affairs,   in  consultation  with  other  United   Nations
entities, will further develop the  framework for United Nations mine-action
programmes.   At  the field  level,  it will  fulfil this  responsibility by
establishing the  appropriate capacities to  coordinate all such  activities
within United Nations programmes.

111.   As  experience increases  and the  number of  actual and  prospective
programmes  multiplies, the  United Nations  is moving  to standardize  many
elements of  its activities,  including survey,  information collection  and
management, and training and  management modules.  Care  should be taken  to
ensure that  the standardized models  are flexible enough  that they can  be
tailored  to the  requirements of each  national programme, as  no one model
will answer the requirements of all operations.

112.   Mine clearance is slow, dangerous and expensive, and to clear all the
mines already laid cannot be accomplished  within the limitations of current
funding  and  technology.    The  international  community  must  now   make
increased  efforts to  develop de-mining technologies that  will improve the
speed and  the  safety  of de-mining  without significantly  increasing  the
cost.  Member States are strongly  urged to expand research  and development
on humanitarian  mine-clearance techniques and  technology, with  a view  to
developing practicable, low-cost  and sustainable equipment.  Member  States
need to work together  to achieve this and  the United Nations  is examining
methods   by  which  it   can  establish   and  promote  such  international

113.   The  Central Land-Mine  Database  of  the Department  of Humanitarian
Affairs,  which  was  on  display  at  the  International  Meeting  on  Mine
Clearance, has received very positive  recognition as a valuable information

tool  for  minerelated activities.    All  organizations involved  in  mine-
related  activities  are  asked  to  work  closely  with  the  Department to
increase the  database's capacity further.   The Department  is also  in the
process of establishing a central repository of  mine-awareness materials to
facilitate  the   exchange  of   information,  which   would  increase   the
effectiveness and  usefulness of  ongoing awareness  work.   In addition,  a
central repository  for information on  mineclearance techniques was  called
for recently at the International Meeting on Mine Clearance.
  114.  In  the past few  years, the international  community has  increased
its support  for United Nations  programmes.  However,  it is apparent  that
this is only the  beginning, as the problem is one of enormous  proportions.
Deeper  national commitment and  a greater  level of resources  is needed to
prevail against the land-mine threat and  Member States are therefore  urged
to sustain their support for assistance in mine clearance. 

115.    With the  $22  million pledged  at  the International  Meeting,  the
Voluntary Trust Fund  for Assistance in Mine Clearance will now become fully
operational.  This central Fund  is intended  to be  a complementary funding
source  for  United  Nations  programmes,  as  it  is  designed  to  finance
activities  in the  area of  mine clearance  when other  funds are  not  yet
available or  not  readily available,  in  order  to accelerate  the  United
Nations response to a land-mine problem.   The Secretary-General will report
periodically  on the  status of  the Trust  Fund and  will suggest  ways  to
maintain  it  at an  appropriate  level  for  effective operation.    In the
meantime, Member States, in  particular those who have  not yet done so, are
urged to provide their support to this important endeavour.

116.   The  de-mining standby  capacity has  been widely welcomed  by Member
States and  is seen  as an important  adjunct to the  Voluntary Trust  Fund.
The United  Nations is  engaged in  ongoing discussions  with Member  States
regarding  the most efficient method  for its operation.   Member States are
strongly urged to give  all possible practical support to enable the  United
Nations to establish the standby capacity at a viable level.

117.   The International  Meeting on Mine  Clearance was a  success on  many
levels. It  generated critically  needed financial  resources and  political
support.   It raised the public's  consciousness about  the global land-mine
crisis and initiated  and strengthened contacts  between all those involved.
Consideration will be  given to the convening  of a follow-up meeting within
the next two years.

118.     Mine  clearance  alone  will   not  solve   the  land-mine  crisis.
Significant political  efforts to  stop the  further proliferation  of mines
will have to be  undertaken.  As a priority, the upcoming review  conference
of the States parties  to the Convention on  Prohibitions or Restrictions on
the  Use  of  Certain  Conventional  Weapons  Which  May  Be  Deemed  to  Be
Excessively  Injurious   or  to  Have   Indiscriminate  Effects  must   take
significant steps  to strengthen the  provisions of  the land-mine Protocol.
This  would  include  adding  strong  legal  protections  for   humanitarian
personnel working in  mined areas; achieving meaningful restrictions on  the
transfer  of land-mines,  their component  parts and  land-mine  technology;
obligatory  agreement to  permit inspections  to determine  compliance;  and
appropriate  sanctions  for non-compliance.    The  Convention  should  also
include an institutionalized  mechanism for review.  The land-mine  Protocol
will only be a valuable tool when adherence is universal.

119.  In  its resolutions 48/75 K and  49/75 D, the General Assembly  called
for a  moratorium  on the  export  of  anti-personnel land-mines  and  urged
Member States to  implement such moratoriums.  So  far, only some 20  Member
States  have  answered  this  call.    Those  Member  States  who  have  not
instituted moratoriums are strongly urged to consider doing so.

 120.   The Convention  and export moratoriums  are helpful  in limiting the
proliferation  of  land-mines.   However, as  emphasized on  many occasions,
only a  total ban will effectively  stop their spread once  and for all.   A
ban is easier  to implement and  easier to  monitor and verify.   All Member

States  should  work  towards  this  goal.   The  use  of  land-mines, their
production and transfer must be banned  and those which are  stockpiled must
be destroyed. 



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Date last posted: 18 December 1999 16:30:10
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