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Statement by the Chinese Observer Delegation at the 12th Meeting of the States Parties to the Ottawa Convention
2012/12/03

Mr. President,

At the outset, please allow me to congratulate you on your assumption of the presidency of the 12th Meeting of the States Parties to the Ottawa Convention. The Chinese delegation will fully cooperate with you and other delegations.

Mr. President,

The Chinese Government always attaches great importance to the humanitarian concerns caused by Anti-Personnel Landmines (APLs), and supports the international efforts to address these concerns. China has not joined the Ottawa Convention due to legitimate national defense needs. However, China endorses the purposes and objectives of the Convention, and appreciates the humanitarian spirit reflected therein as well as the important role of the Convention in addressing the humanitarian concerns caused by APLs since its entry into force. In recent years, China, as an observer state, participated in the meetings of the States Parties to the Convention and other relevant activities. Since 2005, China has voted for consecutive years in favor of the UNGA resolution on the implementation of the Ottawa Convention, which demonstrates our position and attitude regarding the Convention.

As High Contracting Party to the Amended Protocol on Landmines (AP II) of the CCW, China has always faithfully fulfilled its obligations under the protocol. Since the 1990s, China has conducted several rounds of comprehensive and large-scale demining operations, which has to a great extent eliminated the scourge of landmines on our territories. The Chinese military forces have destroyed numerous old and outdated APLs which did not meet the technical requirements of the AP II, and developed equipments for the destruction and dismantlement of landmines with a view to accelerate the process of destruction. China will continue to observe its commitment on not exporting APLs.

Mr. President,

Since 1998, China has actively participated in international humanitarian demining cooperation and assistance. China has provided more than 60 million RMB humanitarian demining assistance to nearly 40 developing countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Such assistance includes donation of funds, provision of demining equipment, technical training, direct demining operation, on-site demining guidance as well as victim assistance. In 2012, China sent an expert team to Cambodia to carry out field training on mine clearance. China also held demining training courses for 39 deminers from Sudan and the South Sudan. In addition, China provided victim assistance to Lebanon and Lao PDR which valued 2.3 million RMB, contributing to the early reintegration of mine-affected victims. China is ready to continue its cooperation with the recipient countries and relevant international organizations in conducting such humanitarian assistance.

Mr. President,

China stands ready to further cooperation with the States Parties to the Convention, relevant international organizations and NGOs, to promote international mine actions, to contribute to the reduction of civilian casualties caused by APLs and to the progress of economic and social development in the regions and countries concerned.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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