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Country Reports
ICELAND, Landmine Monitor Report 2000
LM Report 2000 Full Report   Executive Summary   Key Findings   Key Developments   Translated Country Reports


Key developments since March 1999: Iceland ratified the MBT on 5 May 1999.

Mine Ban Policy

The Republic of Iceland signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 4 December 1997 and ratified it on 5 May 1999. The treaty entered into force for Iceland on 1 November 1999. National legislation to ensure implementation is being prepared.[1] Iceland voted in favor of the United Nations General Assembly pro-ban resolutions 1996-1998, and again in December 1999. It attended the First Meeting of States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty in May 1999. It has not submitted its Article 7 report, which was due by 29 April 2000. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that Iceland views the Mine Ban Treaty as important, but does not play an active role in its implementation work.[2]

Iceland has no military forces of its own, but is a member of NATO and has a bilateral defense agreement with the United States. This provides that the U.S. will carry out the defense of Iceland in accordance with its responsibilities under NATO and that Iceland will make all acquisitions of land and other arrangements required to permit use of defense facilities.[3] This leaves unclear the question of whether Iceland, as an MBT State Party, would permit a non-MBT party such as the U.S. to stockpile or transfer prohibited antipersonnel mines on or through Icelandic territory, or assist U.S. forces with mine-related activities prohibited under the MBT. However, when Iceland deposited its instrument of ratification with the United Nations it made no additional qualifying statement that would indicate that U.S. stockpiling or transfer of antipersonnel mines in Iceland, or other assistance, would be regarded as permissible.

Iceland does not produce, transfer or use landmines, and maintains no landmine stockpiles.[4] It is not landmine-affected, although sea mines from World War II occasionally wash up on its shores.[5]

Iceland has stated that it will focus its contributions to mine action on victim assistance programs, and in 1997 granted US$1.3 million for mine victim assistance in Bosnia and Herzegovina, to provide prostheses. By June 2000 just under US$1 million has been spent on this.[6]


[1] E-mail from A. Edda Jokullsdottir, Political Affairs Desk, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 30 June 2000.
[2] Telephone interview with Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 20 June 2000.
[3] Ministry of Foreign Affairs information available at: http://brunnur.stjr.is/interpro/utanr/utn-eng.nsf.
[4] E-mail from Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 30 June 2000.
[5] See, Landmine Monitor Report 1999, p. 711.
[6] E-mail from Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 30 June 2000.