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Statement by the Chinese Observer Delegation at the 14th Meeting of the States Parties to the Ottawa Convention
2015/12/01

Statement by the Chinese Observer Delegation at the 14th Meeting of the States Parties to the Ottawa Convention

(2015/11/30, Geneva)

 

Mr President,

First of all, please allow me on behalf of the Chinese observer delegation, to congratulate you on your assumption as president of the conference.  The Chinese delegation will fully cooperate with you and other delegations, toward the success of the Conference.

Mr President,

We are pleased to see that since its entry into force, the Ottawa Mine Ban Convention has made important contributions to the alleviation of humanitarian concerns caused by anti-personnel land mines. The production, use and trade of anti-personnel land mines have been drastically reduced.  New progress has also been made in demining operations and stockpile destruction.  The victim assistance and international cooperation are further strengthened.

The Chinese Government always attaches great importance to humanitarian concerns caused by anti-personnel land mines (APLs).  We support the international efforts to address the humanitarian problems caused by APLs. China appreciates the humanitarian spirit embodied in the Convention and endorses the purposes and objectives of the Convention.  Although China is not a party to the Convention, it has for many years maintained close exchanges and cooperation with States parties, participated in meetings of the States parties and the review conferences of the Convention as an observer state.  Since 2005, China has voted in favour of the UNGA resolutions on the implementation of the Ottawa Mine Ban Convention for consecutive years, which demonstrate our affirmation and endorsement of the important role of the Convention.

Mr President,

China has always consistently participated in international conventional arms control process in a constructive manner. As a high Contracting Party to the Amended Protocol II of CCW, China has faithfully honoured its obligations under the Protocol.  Since our declaration in 1996 of the moratorium on the export of APLs that do not meet the provisions of the Protocol, China has always adhered to the commitment.

China attaches great importance to capacity-building and has committed considerable human and financial resources in this regard. We have trained numerous skilled technical experts through initiatives such as organizing training courses and conducting demining operations.  We have also made efforts on improving demining equipments and enhancing R & D in safe and clean technology of the destruction of mines and other explosives devices.

China has actively carried out demining work such as mine clearance and victim assistance on its territory. After two previous massive demining campaigns in the border area in 1990s, China has recently launched the third demining campaign in an area of 50 square kilometres along China-Vietnam border. This exercise is estimated to be completed in 2017. 

Mr President,

While addressing domestic landmine problems, China attaches great importance to the international humanitarian demining assistance.  In September this year, President XI Jinping of China announced at the Summit on Peacekeeping during the 70th GA that China will host 10 demining assistance projects in the next 5 years. Since 1998, China has provided demining assistance to more than 40 countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America by hosting training courses and donating demining equipments, having trained nearly 500 demining operators. This year, China hosted a training course on mine clearance for Myanmar that trained 30 demining operators and donated a batch of demining equipments.  China has also concluded a joint demining training course for Ethiopia, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Sudan, which trained more than 30 demining operators.  In addition, China contributed start-up fund and office facilities to the ASEAN mine action centre and will provide a batch of demining devices and office equipment to Cambodia at the end of year. In the future, China will honour its commitment in the spirit of humanitarianism and continually provide assistance to the mine-affected countries and the victims within its own capacity.

Mr President,

China has all along been a staunch force for world peace and promotion to advance development. As a country that had been plagued by mine hazards, China deeply understands the aspirations of the mine-affected countries and its peoples for security and development. We stand ready to provide help within our means to the mine-affected countries and regions in their effort to rebuild their beautiful homestead.  Meanwhile, China is willing to strengthen exchanges with States parties to the Convention, relevant international organizations and non-governmental organization with a view to exploring appropriate modalities of cooperation, so as to contribute to the reductions of civilian casualties caused by landmines and early realization of "a mine-free world".

Thank you, Mr President.

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