First, a few indications of the overall European Union (the European Community and the Member States) contribution to mine action in the world: Since the opening for signature of the Mine Ban Treaty (MBT) in 1997 the EU as such, though not a party in the process, has flanked Member States’ policies and commitments with supplementary, collective policies and measures taken at its level. The result has been a sustained commitment to the fight against mines, including by steadily increasing its funding. To-date, the total EU support to the fight against landmines for the period 1997-2004 has exceeded the figure of € 1 billion euro.
This represents almost half of the world-wide financial assistance to mine action in that period.
This financial effort has consistently been complemented by the political commitment to the universalisation of the MBT. The European Community offers assistance under a policy of conditionality: it encourages ratification and supports States in the implementation of the Mine Ban Treaty.
EC Mine Action Policy – “Zero Victim Target” Strategy for 2005-2007
The new Strategy 2005-2007 and a detailed Multi-annual Programming were approved by the Commission end of 2004. It is the clear response to the Nairobi Action Plan call to map out the remaining challenges posed by landmines. It targets 39 countries and aims “to drastically reduce the lingering threat and impact of landmines in the context of increased local security and regional confidence”. The Strategy has a budget of €140 million from the European Community. This figure represents an increase by 12% compared with the budget of the Strategy and Multi-annual Programming 2002-2004 which amounted to € 125.745 million.
Moreover, in 2004 the European Union (the Member States and the European Community) financial contribution amounted to the new record figure of € 201.252. It represented an increase by 10% in comparison to 2003 total fund of € 182.6 million.
Our efforts to combat landmines are an integral part of the EU humanitarian and development policy.
The overarching objective of the Strategy is the “Zero Victim Target”. To achieve this, the European Community is committed to further strengthening international assistance in mine action, particularly by encouraging the implementation of the Mine Ban Treaty.
The roadmap defined to steer EC mine action towards this goal operates on the basis of three thematic objectives:
- to reduce the anti-personnel landmine threat,
- to alleviate mine victim suffering and aid socio-economic reintegration,
- to enhance local and regional impacts of effective mine action capacity.
Furthermore, in focusing EC mine action geographically, the following criteria will be applied:
- commitment to the Mine Ban Treaty,
- high humanitarian and development need,
- strategic importance for the European Union,
- sustainability and coherence with the wider assistance, proven commitment of non-states parties to mine action and the principles of the Mine Ban Treaty,
- efficiency and effectiveness of local/national mine action planning and programmes.
In the context of this Strategy, the EC will continue its support to countries which have acceded to the Ottawa Convention as well as to parties engaged in peace making agreements, which commits them to stop using and begin clearance of anti-personnel landmines as well as destroying their stockpiles. This policy of conditionality of assistance- alongside significant support for mine ban education, fencing and marking projects in non signatory states- gives the EC confidence that zero victims target is achievable.
The EC is keen to offer extensive support both to reduce the number of potential victims and to emphasise the backing stemming from MBT accession. The international commitment of governments to completely destroy their stockpiles (within 4 years of the treaty becoming binding) and clear their landmines under the Ottawa Convention (within 10 years) is rewarded. In parallel, the EC can help protect local populations in non-signatory countries by reducing the current risk of further victims.
The EC will continue its fight against APL and their devastating effects by focusing its assistance not only on mine threat alleviation projects such as mine clearance, risk education and stockpile destruction, but also on victim assistance and structural capacity building to raise the level of mine action management capacity within mine affected countries. In all actions significant efforts will furthermore be made (through cross-cutting horizontal activities) to help the populations affected in a more efficient and effective way.
Financial contribution of the European Community to mine actions worldwide in 2004
The European Community allocated in mine actions in 2004 year € 57.844 million.
Funds committed by the European Community in 2004
Afghanistan, € 15 million: continuation of programme activities already funded in the previous years by the EC including mine and unexploded ordnances clearance and support for the Mine Action Centre for Afghanistan.
Kyrgyz Republic, € 0.3 million: mine awareness and mine risk education (MRE) activities among the population of the region of Batken Oblast (Southern Kyrgyzstan), marking of mined areas in the region of Batken Oblast, analysis of the situation, which could be used in the future definition of development policies.
Tajikistan, € 0.7 million: survey of suspected mine and unexploded ordnances contaminated areas, marking and fencing them, clearance of minefields and areas contaminated with unexploded ordnances, training and technical support to local deminers.
Northern Caucasus, € 0.3 million: mine awareness education for children. In the light of UNICEF Mine Action Strategy 2002-2005, this project will ensure that communities in Chechnya (with focus on children and young people) are not only aware of the risks of mines and UXOs, but also encouraged to behave in a way, which reduces the risk to people, property and the environment. The ultimate objective is to contribute to the reduction of the risk to a level whereby people can carry on their daily life safely.
Cambodia, € 5.17 million
- € 5 million: mine clearance and MRE. Mine clearance has been incorporated into an integrated Rural Development Project with a total budget of € 25 million over a 5 year implementation period.
- € 0.17 million: de-mining and risk education in the Sla Kraov district.
Sri Lanka, € 5.4 million
- € 0.6 million: completion of national survey and production of integrated work-plan for high priority mine clearance in the country for 2004-2006 for the benefit of 2.5 million returnees and residents; manual and mechanical mine-clearance in Jaffna, including de-mining training; UXO bulk demolition and destruction; ambulance service for mine victims.
- € 0.4 million: surveys and MRE for 200,000 beneficiaries: mine risk education, technical survey and fencing, emergency mine clearance.
- € 0.6 million: mine field surveys, MRE, manual and mechanical mine-clearance in the Vanni region.
- € 0.3 million: mine awareness for the benefit of 260,000 IDPs and resident populations, especially chidren and women: community-based MRE activities, MRE in schools through training of teachers and provision of educational material, building up of local MRE capacity, development of mass media campaign; support to 250 mine-victims.
- € 0.1 million: revival of the mine victims rehabilitation centre: production and distribution of prostheses, orthoses and other assistive devices, as well as physiotherapy services, occupational therapy and psychosocial/psychiatric counselling.
- € 1.4 million: mine victims assistance, EC assistance to the UNICEF Mine Risk Education and Survivor Assistance programme.
- € 2 million: mine action support, assistance project to UNDP programme.
Lao People Democratic Republic, € 1.01 million
- € 0.128 million: reduction of UXO-related accidents and casualties occurring on the project sites and safe post-clearance development of targeted sites.
- € 0.128 million: clearance of UXO in support of CARE Food Security Project in Ngommalath and Boulapha districts of Khammouane Province.
- € 0.503 million: UXO clearance and livelihood development in Xieng Khouang Province.
- € 0.254 million: UXO clearance and awareness-raising in Khammouane Province.
Thailand, € 0.25 million: mine victims assistance, MRE, assistance to mine victims and prevention of mine risk for refugees in the camps along the Thai-Burmese border.
Angola, € 2.28 million
- € 1.5 million: Implementation of the Ottawa Convention through the disposal of stockpiled anti-personnel landmines in Angola.
- € 0.17 million: mine action support to repatriation and re-settlement.
- € 0.16 million: emergency de-mining in Cuando Cubango.
- € 0.45 million: humanitarian mine action in Malanje
Democratic Republic of Congo, € 1.41 million: mine actions programme.
Eritrea, € 1 million: EC Support to the Mine Action Capacity Building Programme in Eritrea.
Ethiopia, € 1 million: Landmine Impact Survey.
Mozambique, € 0.9 million: mine clearance.
Somalia, € 1.8 million: mine clearance and landmine impact.
Sudan, € 2.4 million: mine actions programme.
Uganda, € 0.07 million: mine risk awareness, mine victims rehabilitation.
Bosnia & Herzegovina, € 3.817 million
- € 0.66 million: mine clearance and de-mining capacity building. De-mining activities support the return of refugees and internally-displaced persons (a priority for EC assistance in the sector 'Democratic Stabilisation'). Implementation of the second phase of the Exit strategy for creation of sustainable de-mining capacities.
- € 0.34 million: de-mining activities in support of the return of refugees and internally-displaced persons (a priority for EC assistance in the sector 'Democratic Stabilisation'). Implementation of the second phase of the Exit strategy for the creation of sustainable de-mining capacities within the Republic Srpska.
- € 0.36 million: de-mining activities in support to the return of refugees and internally-displaced persons (a priority for EC assistance in the sector 'Democratic Stabilisation'). Implementation of the third phase of the Exit strategy for creation of sustainable de-mining capacities.
- € 0.24 million: de-mining activities in support to the return of refugees and internally displaced persons in BiH (a priority for EC assistance in the sector 'Democratic Stabilisation'). Implementation of the third phase of the Exit strategy for creation of sustainable de-mining capacities within the Republic Srpska.
- € 2 million: mine clearance and technical survey, capacity building.
- € 0.217 million: replacement of worn-out mine action equipment for Civil Protection Administrations.
Croatia, € 2 million: mine clearance.
Cyprus, € 2.5 million: mine clearance of buffer zone and adjacent areas with a total estimated mined area of 3.8 million m2, of which 2.4 million m² in the buffer zone. The highest priority for clearance in the programme is linked to the opening of new crossing points through the buffer zone and targeted to those areas where landmines are present or suspected and mine clearance activities are required before new crossing points can be established.
Ukraine, € 7 million: destruction of landmines stockpile in Ukraine.
Colombia, € 2.5 million: Institutional strengthening of the Colombian national mine action capacity.
EC Joint Researcher Centre, € 0.46 million: test & evaluation of metal detectors and dual sensor mine detectors for humanitarian demining.
Campaigning, € 0.5 million: support for the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, including the Landmine Monitor Initiative.
Inter-sessional Meetings in Geneva (February & June 2004), € 0.08 million: contribution by the European Commission, of the cost of the services of 6 interpreters, at the 'Works on Mechanism Inter-sessions of the Ottawa Convention' Meeting (February & June 2004).