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Last Updated: 11 October 2012

Mine Ban Policy

The Portuguese Republic signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 3 December 1997 and ratified it on 19 February 1999, becoming a State Party on 1 August 1999. Portugal formerly produced, imported, and exported antipersonnel mines. In May 1996 Portugal announced an indefinite moratorium on the production, export, and use (except for training purposes) of antipersonnel mines. Legislation to enforce the antipersonnel mine prohibition domestically was enacted on 22 July 2004. In June 2011, Portugal adopted law 37/2011, which according to Portugal’s 2012 Article 7 report, “…allow[s] for a more efficient supervision and control of activities regarding the transfer and circulation of defence related products.”[1] Mines are explicitly mentioned among the weapons regulated by this law.[2]

Portugal submitted its 12th Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 report in 2012. With the exception of the form on national implementation measures, all other sections of the report remained unchanged from previous reports.

Portugal completed destruction of its stockpile of 271,967 antipersonnel mines in March 2003, in advance of its 1 August 2003 treaty-mandated destruction deadline. Portugal initially retained 1,115 antipersonnel mines for training and development purposes, but this was reduced to 694 mines by the end of 2010.[3]

Portugal attended the Eleventh Meeting of States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty in November–December 2011 in Phnom Penh. During the general exchange of views, Portugal reported that it hosted a seminar in Lisbon for Lusophone (Portuguese-speaking) countries and Timor-Leste to discuss shared experiences in implementing the Mine Ban Treaty.[4] In May 2012, Portugal attended the intersessional Standing Committee meetings in Geneva. At this meeting, Portugal confirmed that it retains 694 mines for training purposes; these mines are either inert or fuzeless.[5]

Portugal is party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons and its Amended Protocol II on landmines and Protocol V on explosive remnants of war.


[1] Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report (for the period 1 January 2011 to 31 December 2011), Form A.

[2] Law no. 37/2011, 22 June 2011, http://dre.pt/pdf1s/2011/06/11900/0370303724.pdf.

[3] Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report (for the period 1 January 2010 to 31 December 2010), Form D.

[4] Statement of Portugal, Mine Ban Treaty Eleventh Meeting of States Parties, Phnom Penh, 27 November 2011.

[5] Statement of Portugal, Mine Ban Treaty Standing Committee on the General Status and Operation of the Convention, Geneva, 25 May 2012.