Statement on New Use of Anti-Personnel Mines, Mine Ban Treaty intersessional meeting

Let me start by giving some context on the new use of antipersonnel mines worldwide.  In recent years, since the last Review Conference, the use of antipersonnel mines by government forces has been rare.  In most years, only one or two governments used mines—Myanmar and Syria – and neither of them used large numbers of mines.

It is important to recognize that with a few notable exceptions, or rather, deplorable exceptions, there has been limited use by non-state armed groups too.  The deplorable exceptions include ISIS in Syria and Iraq, the Taliban in Afghanistan, and Houthis in Yemen. The  vast majority are improvised mines, improvised antivehicle and antipersonnel mines.

These have often been called improvised explosive devices (IEDs), but should more accurately be called improvised mines. In particular, victim-activated IEDs, those that explode from the presence, proximity, or contact of a person, are in fact antipersonnel mines as defined in the Mine Ban Treaty, and therefore banned by the treaty.

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Source: Human Rights Watch