Vienna, 18 December 2017 Press release

Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention: 16th Meeting of the States Parties under Austrian chairmanship in Vienna reaffirms objective of mine-free world by 2025

From 18 to 20 December, the 16th Meeting of the States Parties to the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention took place under Austrian chairmanship in the Vienna International Centre. The meeting was opened on Monday by this year’s chair, Ambassador Thomas Hajnoczi, and opening addresses were held by Peter Maurer, President of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Nobel Peace Laureate Jody Williams, as well as Tun Channareth, mine victim and activist from the International Campaign to Ban Landmines.

More than 400 delegates, including government representatives, Nobel Peace Laureates, landmine experts, mine survivors and members of international NGOs, attended the meeting.

Das Bundesheer auf dem Heldenplatz

On the occasion of the meeting, the Austrian Armed Forces held a demonstration of their most up-to-date mine clearing techniques on the Heldenplatz in the city centre.

Humanitarian concerns prompted Austria to assume a leading role in the innovative process to adopt the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention. The treaty on the prohibition of anti-personnel mines was signed in December 1997 in Ottawa, Canada by 121 states. To date, 163 nations have joined the convention and are actively working towards ridding the world of landmines.

In its function as chair of the 16th Meeting of the States Parties, Austria offered an integrative forum for reflection open to everybody, whether it be States Parties, non-States Parties, civil society, international organisations and anybody else with an interest in achieving the objective of the 2014 Maputo Action Plan: a mine-free world by 2025.

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