U.S. Statement at Conference of High Contracting Parties to Amended Protocol II to the CCW

CCW  to Amended Protocol II Conference of High Contracting Parties
U.S. Statement
Geneva, 12 November 2019

As delivered by Josh Dorosin

Thank you, Mister President.  We congratulate you on your selection as President, and our delegation stands ready to support you and your team in your efforts to facilitate an informative exchange among High Contracting Parties regarding the implementation of Amended Protocol II.

We join other High Contracting Parties in welcoming Benin’s decision to become party to Amended Protocol II.

The annual meeting of experts provided an excellent opportunity for High Contracting Parties to share good practices related to the protocol’s implementation.  The United States values the opportunities the meeting of experts provide for High Contracting Parties to voluntarily share humanitarian mine action best practices and other issues related to implementation of the protocol.  In particular, we believe that AP II discussions will continue to increase the protection of civilians from the threat of IEDs.  We appreciate the efforts of the co-coordinators to focus our discussions on aspects of mitigating the threat of IEDs on civilians, such as though risk education and IED disposal.

The United States also appreciates the co-coordinator’s initiative to update the IED questionnaire with the goal of aligning it more closely with the scope of APII and the current IED mandate.  We believe that High Contracting Parties would benefit from a review and revision of the original questionnaire.

The United States also appreciated the informal consultations on Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines (MOTAPM) held by the President earlier this year.  We support discussing the implementation of APII’s provisions regarding MOTAPM, and, as suggested by the Irish delegation,  believe an exchange of good practices implemented by APII High Contracting Parties that help to reduce risk of harm to civilians when MOTAPM is being used would be an excellent way to build our collective understanding of how MOTAPM can be used responsibly.

The United States supports continuing our voluntary exchanges of information on implementation of APII.  The requirements of Amended Protocol II are reflected in U.S. military doctrine and regulations related to the use of landmines.

The United States is also the world’s leader in providing assistance for humanitarian mine action, which is a large part of our Convention Weapons Destruction program.  This program has provided more than $3.6 billion in assistance since 1993.

The United States looks forward to actively participating in today’s meeting.