20 May 2016
The intersessional meetings of the Mine Ban Treaty were marked by a strong focus on Finishing the Job by 2025. Ecuador confirmed it was on track to completing mine clearance next year and Algeria was positive that it could also finish clearing its mined areas in 2017.
A panel led by Canada featured representatives of Afghanistan, Mozambique, New Zealand and the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL), discussing how to mobilize political will on the last stretch towards a mine-free world.
Peru and Niger presented their requests for extended deadlines to complete mine clearance.
Despite repeatedly stating that opposition forces recently used antipersonnel mines on its territory, Ukraine failed to submit a request to extend its 1 June 2016 demining deadline, and will unfortunately become in violation of its Mine Ban Treaty obligation on mine clearance as of 1 June. The President of the upcoming Meeting of States Parties, Chile, encouraged Ukraine to request an extended deadline, as did Austria, Costa Rica, Ireland, Norway, Peru, Sweden, Switzerland, Zambia, the International Campaign to Ban Landmines and the International Committee of the Red Cross.
Ten states spoke about assistance to landmine victims, many referring to the lack of adequate funding for projects that would increase the availability and accessibility of assistance, as promised through the Maputo Action Plan.
Sri Lanka explained that it was carrying out internal consultations with a view to join the Mine Ban Treaty soon as announced in March 2016.
For the first time ever, a representative of the government of Myanmar joined an ICBL-led side event highlighting the ongoing impact of landmines in the country. The full-house event featured the world premiere of a short version of the upcoming documentary "Steps Not Taken: Landmines in Myanmar's Karen State", by Kimberley McCosker and Cory Wright. Another ICBL-led side event explored how states in fragile economic and political situations can fulfil their obligations towards survivors and victims of landmines, and other people with similar needs.
ICBL members carried bilateral meetings with States Parties to the treaty, encouraging them to take all necessary measures to finish the job of treaty implementation by 2025.
Chile said it was getting ready to welcome the mine ban community to Santiago for the 15th Meeting of States Parties from 28 November to 2 December 2016, and Austria announced that the 16th Meeting of States Parties would be held in Vienna from 18 to 22 December 2017.