Canada was the first to deposit its ratification, followed by Ireland and Mauritius. The convention will enter into force six months after the 40th state deposits its ratification with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, at which time the clock on a 10 year framework for stockpile destruction will also start ticking. (See ACT, September 1997.) Key non signatory countries such as the United States, China and Russia observed the conference. The U.S. respresentative, Ambassador Karl Inderfurth, said in his December 4 statement that the United States would be "in a position to sign the Ottawa Convention," if it finds alternatives to the use of an anti tank mine system that incorporates anti personnel submunitions and to mines on the Korean Peninsula.