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Last Updated: 24 August 2014

Mine Action

Contamination and Impact

The Republic of Cuba’s mine contamination remains unchanged from previous years. Cuban authorities maintain minefields around the US naval base at Guantánamo in the southeast of Cuba. In 2007, Cuba said it carries out “a strict policy with regard to guaranteeing a responsible use of antipersonnel mines with an exclusively defensive character and for [Cuba’s] national security.”[1] According to an earlier statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, existing minefields are duly “marked, fenced and guarded” in accordance with CCW Amended Protocol II to the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW).[2] According to a book published in 2008, mines laid around the naval base detonate “at least once a month,”[3] but it has not been possible to independently confirm this claim.

Mine Action Program

There is no mine action program in Cuba. Cuba has not conducted any mine clearance in its minefields around the US naval base at Guantánamo over the last 10 years.


[1] Statement by Rebeca Hernández Toledano, First Secretary, Permanent Mission of Cuba to the UN, “Item 29: Assistance in mine action,” UN General Assembly, Fourth Committee, New York, 6 November 2007.

[2] Statement of the Directorate of Multilateral Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 19 June 2000.

[3] “The Cuban mines detonate at least once a month, sometimes starting fires that sweep across the fence line. [Staff Sergeant Kaveh Wooley of the US Marines]…described a fire that started the previous summer and turned into a giant cook-off, with about 30 mines exploding…” Daniel P. Erikson, Cuba Wars: Fidel Castro, the United States, and the Next Revolution (USA, Bloomsbury, October 2008), pp. 196–7.