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Last Updated: 18 October 2010

Mine Ban Policy

Commitment to the Mine Ban Treaty

Mine Ban Treaty status

State Party

National implementation measures 

No new implementation measures

Transparency reporting

30 April 2010


The Kingdom of Thailand signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 3 December 1997 and ratified it on 27 November 1998, becoming a State Party on 1 May 1999. Thailand has not enacted domestic legislation to implement the Mine Ban Treaty. As it has reported since 2002, Thailand is still in the process of passing an executive measure, the Office of the Prime Minister Regulations Governing the Implementation of the Convention.[1]

Thailand submitted its twelfth Article 7 transparency report on 30 April 2010, covering calendar year 2009.[2]

Thailand attended the Second Review Conference of the Mine Ban Treaty in Cartagena, Colombia in November–December 2009, where it ended its term as co-chair of the Standing Committee on Victim Assistance and Socio-Economic Reintegration. It was named as co-rapporteur of the Standing Committee on the General Status and Operation of the Convention. Thailand spoke during the high-level segment, and also made interventions on victim assistance, mine clearance, cooperation and assistance, universalization, and Cambodia’s mine clearance deadline extension request.

At the intersessional Standing Committee meetings in Geneva in June 2010, in addition to its co-rapporteur role, Thailand made statements on its mine clearance efforts, international cooperation and assistance, and the evaluation of the treaty’s Implementation Support Unit.

Thailand is not party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons.

Production, transfer, stockpile destruction, and retention

Thailand states that it has never produced or exported antipersonnel mines. Thailand formerly imported antipersonnel mines from China, Italy, the United States, and the former Yugoslavia. It completed destruction of 337,725 stockpiled antipersonnel mines on 24 April 2003.

In its Article 7 report submitted in 2010, Thailand reported that at the end of 2009, it retained 3,626 antipersonnel mines for training purposes, a reduction of 12 from the previous year. It reported that 12 mines retained by the National Police Department (five M14 and seven M16) were destroyed during training. At the end of 2009, the Royal Thai Army retained 3,000 mines, the Royal Thai Air Force retained 581 mines, and the National Police Department retained 45 mines.[3] The total of 3,000 mines under the control of the army has not changed since 2001.

In June 2010, Thailand said that since the number of mines retained is high compared to the number used each year, it would review its retention and destruction plans.[4]

Thailand has never reported in any detail on the intended purposes and actual uses of mines kept for training—a step agreed by States Parties at the Review Conferences in 2004 and 2009.

During 2009, the Thailand Mine Action Center (TMAC) held a meeting with the military services and asked them to reassess the number of mines retained and urged them to destroy mines if there was no plan to use them for training.[5]

The Royal Thai Army, Navy, Air Force, and National Police Department initially retained a total of 4,970 antipersonnel mines for training. The number of retained mines did not change from 2001 to 2004. In 2005–2006, Thailand reduced the number of mines retained by 257.[6] In 2007, it reduced the number by another 1,063 mines. It appears that 63 of the mines retained by the National Police Department were consumed during training activities, and all of the 1,000 mines retained by the navy were simply destroyed, presumably because they were no longer deemed necessary.[7]  In 2008, Thailand destroyed another 12 mines, leaving a total of 3,638.[8]

While Thailand has not undertaken physical modifications of its Claymore mine stockpile to ensure use only in command-detonated mode, officials have stated that all units have received orders that Claymore mines are to be used only in command-detonated mode.[9]


The insurgency in southern Thailand has seen extensive use of command-detonated improvised explosive devices (IEDs). There have apparently also been isolated instances of use of homemade landmines or victim-activated IEDs. In May 2009, a Ranger reportedly stepped on landmine while investigating an explosion in Yaha district, Yala province.[10] In August 2009, a woman lost her leg after reportedly stepping on a landmine in a rubber plantation.[11] In October 2009, in Raman district, Yala province, an official reportedly stepped on a landmine while investigating a shooting.[12]

Although anti-government mobs used explosive devices in Bangkok and Chiang Mai during clashes with security personnel in April 2010, none were reported to involve mines or mine-like victim-activated devices.[13]

In February 2010, three Thai soldiers were injured in two separate incidents from what were reported as newly laid mines on the Thai-Myanmar border in Mae Sot district, Tak province. The mines were reportedly laid by smugglers, believed to be connected to an insurgent group in Myanmar, to protect smuggling routes. The Royal Thai Army was sent to the area to conduct clearance.[14]

Thai-Cambodia Border Incidents

In October 2008, two Thai soldiers stepped on antipersonnel mines while on patrol in disputed territory between Thailand and Cambodia, near the World Heritage Site of Preah Vihear. Thai authorities maintained that the area was previously clear of landmines and that the mines had been newly placed by Cambodian forces. Cambodia denied the charges and stated that the Thai soldiers had entered Cambodian territory in an area known to contain antipersonnel mines and were injured by mines laid during previous armed conflicts.[15]

In April 2009, another Thai soldier was reportedly wounded by an antipersonnel mine at the same location during further armed conflict between the two countries.[16] In September 2009, Commander in Chief of the Royal Thai Army, General Anupong Paochinda, stated that Cambodian troops were laying fresh landmines along the disputed areas and close to routes where Thai soldiers make regular patrols.[17] The statement elicited a strong rebuttal from the Cambodian ambassador in Bangkok.[18]

Cambodia and Thailand have never reached a resolution of this matter, and other States Parties have apparently not pursued a resolution of this serious compliance concern.

In February 2010, a Thai civilian who had been arrested a year earlier pled guilty to laying landmines on Cambodian soil and was sentenced to 20 years in prison. The Thai government denied any involvement in this matter.[19]


[1] Interview with Lt.-Gen. Tumrongsak Deemongkol, Director-General, TMAC, Bangkok, 25 February 2010. Thailand’s Article 7 reports submitted from 2007–2009 all stated, “The issuing is still in progress.” The 2010 report apparently mistakenly dropped that phrase, as the regulations have not yet been adopted and are still in progress; they had not been entered into the Royal Thai Government Gazette as of late July 2010. TMAC reported in 2009 that the Sub-committee on Administration and Evaluation is responsible for this process, and that in early 2009 it was in the process of submitting the draft regulations to the National Committee for Humanitarian Mine Action for consideration. The draft was first developed by TMAC in 2002. Thailand has reported that the draft regulations have been pending approval of various entities each year. See Landmine Monitor Report 2009, p. 718, and previous editions.

[2] Previous Article 7 reports were submitted on 30 April 2009, 30 April 2008, 25 April 2007, 25 April 2006, 25 April 2005, 3 May 2004, 22 July 2003, 30 April 2002, 17 April 2001, 2 May 2000, and 10 November 1999.

[3] Article 7 Report, Form D.2, 21 April 2010.

[4] Statement of Thailand, Standing Committee on the General Status and Operation of the Convention, Geneva, 21 June 2010.

[5] Interview with Lt.-Gen. Tumrongsak Deemongkol, TMAC, Bangkok, 25 February 2010.

[6]  There were discrepancies in the reporting on the number of mines. See Landmine Monitor Report 2007, p. 665.

[8] Article 7 Report, Form D, 20 April 2009 reports that 12 mines retained by the National Police Department (nine M14 and three M16) were destroyed.

[9] Interview with Lt.-Gen. Tumrongsak Deemongkol, TMAC, Bangkok, 19 March 2009. TMAC stated this in 2007 and 2008 as well. In its Article 7 report for 1999, Thailand reported that it had 6,117 M18 and M18A1 Claymore mines in stock.

[10] “Suspects secretly plant bomb to lure officials to inspect before setting off second bomb causing one injury,” National News Bureau of Thailand, 21 May 2009, thainews.prd.go.th.

[11] “Three Muslims killed in Thai south,” Agence France-Presse (Bangkok), 27 August 2009, news.asiaone.com.

[12] “Official investigating shooting scene steps on a mine planted by suspects in Yala,” National News Bureau of Thailand, 31 October 2009, thainews.prd.go.th.

[13]Jason Szep and Ambika Ahuja, “Twelve die as troops, protesters clash in Bangkok,” Reuters (Bangkok), 10 April 2010, www.reuters.com.

[14]“Thai soldier steps on landmine along the Thai-Burma border in Mae Sot,” National News Bureau of Thailand, 18 February 2010, thainews.prd.go.th; and Usa Pichai, “Thai authorities clear landmines after soldiers injured,” Mizzima (Chiang Mai), 23 February 2010, www.mizzima.com.

[15] For extensive details, see Landmine Monitor Report 2009, pp. 243–244. 

[16] “Cambodia, Thai border clash leaves two dead,” Agence France-Presse (Phnom Penh), 2 April 2009.

[17] “Hun Sen’s temple comments 'retaliation', says PM,” The Nation, 30 September 2009, www.nationmultimedia.com.

[18] “Cambodia refutes allegations over new landmines,” The Nation, 6 October 2009, www.nationmultimedia.com.

[19] Reportedly, he was not sentenced under the 1999 national law to implement the Mine Ban Treaty, but was charged with attempted murder, endangering national security, and entering Cambodia illegally. According to media reports, the court record states that he was arrested by Cambodian border guards just a few meters inside Cambodian territory while carrying a landmine in February 2009.  He is quoted as saying that Thai soldiers paid him to do so.  See, “Foreign Ministry seeking to help Thai national jailed in Cambodia for planting landmines,” Thai News Agency (Bangkok), 13 February 2010; and “Cambodia Sentences Thai National to 20 Years,” New Tang Dynasty Television, 12 February 2010, english.ntdtv.com.