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Invitation Letter

24 March 2006

To:        The Permanent Missions to the United
Nations of the States Parties to the ConventionThe Permanent Missions to the United
Nations of the States not parties to the ConventionInterested non-governmental and
international organizations

Dear colleagues and friends,

On behalf of the Co-Chairs of the Standing Committees established by the States Parties to the Convention, it is our pleasure to invite you to participate in the 2006 meetings of the Standing Committees. These meetings will take place as follows:

8-12 May 2006
Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD)
Room A, avenue de la Paix 7bis (WMO Building)

These meetings will provide an opportunity to discuss the second year of the application of the Nairobi Action Plan 2005-2009, which was adopted on 3 December 2004 at the First Review Conference, and to follow-up on the priorities contained in the Zagreb Progress Report, which was warmly welcomed on 2 December 2005 at the Sixth Meeting of the States Parties. The Co-Chairs of the four Standing Committees have developed agendas that will ensure ample time for discussions on matters contained in these documents. In particular, the Co-Chairs have emphasised the importance of participation by States Parties which are in the process of clearing mined areas, destroying stockpiled mines or assisting mine victims.

The enclosed Guide to the week of Standing Committee meetings contains valuable suggestions for these States Parties and others in order that they can maximize opportunities for participation. In reviewing this guide, please note that in keeping with past practice the programme does not incorporate a general exchange of views. As in the past, it is essential in May that we get down to work on Monday morning, focusing on that day and throughout the week on key aspects of implementation.

In preparing for the May meetings you may wish to note that the Nairobi Action Plan provides some suggestions regarding the composition of delegations:

  • In action #38, States Parties and organizations are encouraged to include mine victims on their delegations as a means of ensuring effective integration of victims in the work of the Convention.

  • In action #39, States Parties – particularly those with the greatest number of mine victims – and relevant organizations are encouraged to include health, rehabilitation and social services professionals and officials on their delegations.

  • In action #47, the international development community – including national development cooperation agencies where possible and as appropriate – is encouraged to play a significantly expanded role in the work of the Convention, given that mine action for many States Parties is fundamental to the advancement of the UN Millennium Development Goals.

We would ask that you register on-line for the May meetings or by faxing completed registration forms to the GICHD by 2 May 2006. Should you have any questions about the agendas or if you wish to indicate in advance your intention to intervene on particular items, please contact the Implementation Support Unit (isu(at)gichd.ch) or relevant Co-Chairs.

We look forward to seeing you at the meetings in May.

Yours sincerely,


Dijana Plestina
Advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs
of Croatia and President of the 6MSP  
Stephan Nellen
Ambassador and Director
Geneva International Centre for
Humanitarian Demining