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Daily Update: Wednesday 14 May

Opening of the meeting

The meeting of the Standing Committee on Mine Clearance, Mine Risk Education and Mine Action Technologies (SCMC) was convened by its Co-Chairs, Ambassador Jean Lint of Belgium and Mr. Michael Oyugi of Kenya, with the support of its Co-Rapporteurs, Ambassador Kuniko Inoguchi of Japan and Ambassador Sam Sotha of Cambodia.

Overview of the status of implementation

The Co-Chairs PDF 224KB noted that 45 States Parties either have reported mined areas or have not yet done so but are assumed to be mine affected and that by the 2004 Review Conference, it will be important to know both the extent to which advances have been made in implementing Article 5 and the challenges that remain. In this context, the Co-Chairs, encouraged mine affected States Parties to use or continue to use every available means to communicate matters related to the "4P approach", that is, problems related to the mined areas, plans to address these problems, progress made in meeting the obligations of Article 5, and, priorities for assistance in implementing national plans. The Co-Chairs distributed an overview PDF 408KB of information provided by the States Parties in relationship to the 4Ps and highlighted the time-lines PDF 62KB for implementation of Article 5.

The Chair of the ICBL's Mine Action Working Group PDF 42KB and the Chair of the ICBL's Mine Risk Education Working Group also shared their perspectives on the status of implementation.

National updates on implementation

The Co-Chairs recalled that at the last meeting Costa Rica declared it had completed implementation of Article 5 and that Honduras would do the same by the end of 2003. They then called for further updates from mine affected States Parties. The following States Parties provided updates: Democratic Republic of the Congo French PDF 133KB, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cambodia, Croatia, Afghanistan, Guatemala, Ecuador, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Nicaragua, Peru, Tajikistan, Malawi and Cyprus. The following States not Parties provided updates: Sri Lanka, Sudan and Turkey. The United Nations provided an update on Iraq.

Cooperation and assistance between mine affected States Parties

The UNDP made a detailed presentation PDF 115KB on its efforts to support an exchange of capacities and experiences between mine affected States Parties. Norway PDF 90KB, in its capacity as Coordinator of the Resource Mobilisation Contact Group, emphasized the importance of mine-affected to mine-affected capacity exchanges as part of the broader resource mobilisation effort. Yemen also contributed to this discussion.

Updates on assistance and cooperation

The following States Parties provided updates and shared their views on the topic of assistance and cooperation: Germany PDF 1.9MB, Italy, Japan and Belgium. In addition UNICEF PDF 35KB, on behalf of the UN system, the Peace Research Institute of Oslo (PRIO), the GICHD and the non-governmental organization JASMAR shared information on their efforts related to the care and rehabilitation of landmine survivors.

Mine action technologies

Marc Acheroy of Belgium provided an update on standardizing metal detector testing PDF 589KB and a survey of mine action technologies, problems and recommendations PDF 68KB. South Africa, Sweden and Thailand also shared information on progress being made by them in the development and use of technologies.

Co-Chairs' closing remarks

The Co-Chairs made a closing statement PDF 72KB expressing their satisfaction that during the Standing Committee's two meetings in 2003, approximately half of the mine affected States Parties communicated important matters concerning the "4Ps". The Co-Chairs proposed that next year's Co-Chairs continue to promote the use of this "4P" approach and that the mine affected States Parties take full advantage of this approach. The Co-Chairs also urged those States and organizations in a position to provide assistance to renew their commitments to mine action. Finally, in noting the President's call to pursue a variety of regional approaches, the Co-Chairs expressed their view that it would be extremely beneficial if a profile-raising event was held in every region of the world in the lead-up to the Review Conference.