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– Izumi Nakamitsu
UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs
June 2, 2022
122 States Sign Ottawa Landmine Treaty
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Only 14 months after Canada first called for states to negotiate a treaty banning anti personnel landmines worldwide, 122 states (plus the Holy See and two Pacific Island dependencies) emerged from a December 2 4 signing conference in Ottawa with a commitment not to use, stockpile, produce or transfer mines. They joined the 1997 Nobel Peace prize winning international non governmental coalition (the International Campaign to Ban Landmines) in celebrating the signing of the "Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction."

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.