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AG/RES. 1569 (XXVIII-O/98): The Western Hemisphere as an Antipersonnel-Land-Mine-Free Zone


June 2, 1998

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(Resolution adopted at the third plenary session, held on June 2, 1998)

THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY,

HAVING SEEN the report of the Permanent Council on hemispheric security (AG/doc.3718/98) and, in particular, the section on the Western Hemisphere as an antipersonnel-land-mine-free zone;

RECALLING:
Its resolution "The Western Hemisphere as an Antipersonnel-Land-Mine-Free Zone" [AG/RES. 1496 (XXVII-O/97)], which reaffirmed the goals of the global elimination of antipersonnel land mines and the conversion of the Western Hemisphere into an antipersonnel-land-mine-free zone; and
Its resolutions AG/RES. 1299 (XXIV-O/94), AG/RES. 1335 (XXV-O/95), AG/RES. 1343 (XXV-O/95), and AG/RES. 1411 (XXVI-O/96), also on antipersonnel land mines;

WELCOMING the unwavering support of the international community and, in particular, the active participation of member states of the Organization of American States in the campaign to rid the world of antipersonnel land mines;

OBSERVING:

That the Ottawa Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-personnel Mines and on Their Destruction contributes to the goal of making the Western Hemisphere an antipersonnel-land-mine-free zone;

That of the 124 states that have signed the Ottawa Convention, 33 are member states of the Organization; and

That out of a total of 40 ratifications required to bring the Convention into effect, as of June 2, 1998, 23 countries had ratified it, six of them member states of the Organization;

RECOGNIZING:

The importance of bringing the Ottawa Convention into effect as soon as possible and of advancing the implementation of the program for mine action related to that Convention in order to rid the world of the indiscriminate and harmful effects of antipersonnel land mines; and The contribution to hemispheric security of various bans, moratoria, and other restrictions on antipersonnel land mines already adopted by some member states;

RECALLING ALSO that the importance of making progress on the antipersonnel land mines issue was emphasized both at the San Salvador Regional Conference on Confidence- and Security-Building Measures and at the Second Summit of the Americas;

RECOGNIZING the importance of the Organization's activities in support of demining, as well as the cooperation efforts of a humanitarian nature to provide assistance to victims of these weapons so that affected states may be freed from this scourge in an urgent manner, thereby contributing to the conversion of the Western Hemisphere into an antipersonnel-land-mine-free zone; and

EXPRESSING its satisfaction with the establishment of the OAS Register of Antipersonnel Land Mines, and with the submission of information for this Register by member states,

RESOLVES:

1. To reaffirm the goals of the global elimination of antipersonnel land mines and the conversion of the Western Hemisphere into an antipersonnel-land-mine-free zone.

2. Once again, to call upon member states that have not yet done so to declare and implement moratoria on the production, use, and transfer of all antipersonnel land mines in the Western Hemisphere at the earliest possible date and to inform the Secretary General when they have done so.

3. Once again, to urge member states that have not yet done so to become parties to the 1980 United Nations Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May Be Deemed to Be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects and its protocols, including Protocol II as amended; to urge those member states which are already parties to this Convention to ratify Protocol II as amended at the earliest possible date; and to request member states to inform the Secretary General when they have done so.

4. Once again, to urge member states, as they work towards the goals adopted in resolution AG/RES. 1411 (XXVI-O/96), to continue to implement measures aimed at suspending the spread of antipersonnel land mines, such as stockpile destruction; and to encourage member states to adopt domestic legislation, as necessary, to prohibit the private possession and transfer of antipersonnel land mines and to inform the Secretary General when they have done so.

5. To urge member states to submit by April 15 of each year information for inclusion in the OAS Register of Antipersonnel Land Mines, established by Permanent Council resolution CP/RES. 724 (1162/98), in keeping with the provisions of resolution AG/RES. 1496 (XXVII-O/97).

6. To urge member states that have not yet signed or ratified the Ottawa Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-personnel Mines and on Their Destruction to consider doing so as soon as possible to ensure its earliest possible entry into force.

7. To call upon member states that have signed the Ottawa Convention to report to the General Secretariat on the status of their ratification process.

8. To request that the Permanent Council, through its Committee on Hemispheric Security, consider the possibility of developing new demining programs in the Americas to assist affected member states, upon their request, in fulfilling their commitment to convert the Western Hemisphere into an antipersonnel-land-mine-free zone.

9. Also to encourage member states, in conformity with the agreements in the Plan of Action of the Second Summit of the Americas, to take action and support "international humanitarian demining efforts in this area, with the goal of ensuring that priority is given to mines that threaten civilians and of ensuring that land can be restored for productive purposes. The latter will take place through effective regional and international cooperation and coordination, as requested by the affected States, to survey, mark, map, and remove mines; effective mine awareness for the civilian population and assistance to victims; and development and deployment of new mine detection and clearance technologies, as appropriate."

10. To request that the General Secretariat continue to provide, as necessary, to the United Nations, the International Committee of the Red Cross, and other appropriate international organizations, updated information on OAS activities to promote the elimination of all use, stockpiling, production, and transfer of antipersonnel land mines and to promote programs supporting the removal of such mines.

11. To instruct the Permanent Council to report to the General Assembly at its twenty-ninth regular session on each of the topics addressed in this resolution.



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