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Table of Contents
Country Reports
MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA, Key Developments - Landmine Monitor Report 2001
<Europe/Central Asia

MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA
- Key Developments

States Parties

Jordan. Jordan has destroyed an additional 16,000 stockpiled antipersonnel mines, for a total of 36,552 destroyed. A National Demining and Rehabilitation Committee has been formed. Mine awareness activities continue to expand. Jordan acceded to CCW Amended Protocol II on 6 September 2000.

Qatar. Qatar revealed for the first time that it has a stockpile of antipersonnel mines for training purposes. Qatar has still not submitted its initial Article 7 report, due in September 1999.

Tunisia. Tunisia submitted its Article 7 transparency report in July 2000, detailing its 17,575 stockpiled antipersonnel mines and five mined areas for the first time.

Yemen. The Landmine Impact Survey was completed in July 2000 and the Yemeni government approved a five-year Strategic Mine Action Plan based on the survey data in February 2001. The Survey identified 592 affected villages and 1,078 mine sites covering 923 million square meters of land, affecting 828,000 Yemeni civilians. An additional 4,286 antipersonnel mines were destroyed from stockpiles in February 2001. In 2000, 447 antivehicle mines and 4,897 UXO were cleared from an area of land covering 666,445 square meters. There were at least twelve mine casualties in 2000, and three mine incidents by mid-2001.

Signatories

Algeria. Algeria completed the internal ratification process for the Mine Ban Treaty in December 2000, but has not yet deposited its instrument of ratification at the United Nations.

Non-Signatories

Egypt. The National Committee to Supervise Mine Clearance met for the first time in June 2000. The National Committee established a trust fund for mine clearance in the western desert. There were twelve new mine/UXO victims reported in 2000.

Iran. According to Iranian officials, in the year 2000, more than 880,000 mines and UXO, and 30,000 hectares of land, were cleared. Since 1988, over 750,000 hectares of mined land and 9 million mines and UXO have been cleared. The Medical Engineering Research Center estimates that there are about 300 mine and UXO casualties in Iran every year.

Israel. It appears that Israel has continued to use antipersonnel mines in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, allegedly without proper fencing and marking as required by CCW Amended Protocol II, which entered into force for Israel on 30 April 2001. There have been allegations of mine use by Palestinians as well.

Kuwait. Kuwait has reportedly agreed to provide $50 million for development projects, including mine clearance assistance, in South Lebanon. In Kuwait, it is estimated that some 250 antipersonnel and antivehicle mines were cleared in the year 2000. There were at least forty-four recorded and reported mine casualties between March 2000 and February 2001. A new mine victim database has been established which shows there have been more than 1,500 civilian mine/UXO victims in Kuwait since August 1990.

Lebanon. The National Demining Office has identified 1,388 mined areas, including 553 in South Lebanon. A nationwide Level One Landmine Impact Survey was due to start July 2001. From October 1999 to April 2001, the Lebanese Army cleared 23,293 antipersonnel mines, 4,905 antitank mines and numerous other UXO. The Lebanese Army cleared 672,415 square meters of land in 2000 and 154,772 square meters up to April 2001. At least 57 mine awareness education events were conducted between May and December 2000. The United Arab Emirates has pledged $50 million for demining and reconstruction in South Lebanon. Since the Israeli withdrawal from South Lebanon in May 2000, 132 mine casualties have been recorded.

Morocco. In February 2001, Moroccan officials for the first time claimed that Morocco no longer uses antipersonnel mines. In March 2001, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs told Landmine Monitor that Morocco does not have a stockpile of antipersonnel mines. Morocco and the Polisario traded accusations of new mine use in Western Sahara. According to a UN report, in May 2001 the Royal Moroccan Army destroyed about 3,000 antitank mines and 37,000 antipersonnel mines in the Western Sahara. Between March 2000 and March 2001, Moroccan authorities registered 51 victims of antivehicle mines and UXO explosions in the Western Sahara.

Oman. US demining assistance began in 2000, including a survey in April 2000 and a training mission in February 2001. Oman revealed for the first time that it has a “limited” stockpile of antipersonnel mines for training purposes.

Saudi Arabia. In May 2001, Saudi Arabia announced it would provide $3 million for mine action in Yemen, Saudi Arabia’s first mine action funding contribution since 1999. Saudi Arabia has confirmed that it has never used, produced, or exported antipersonnel mines.

Syria. In cooperation with Syrian authorities, UN peacekeeping forces in the Golan Heights have initiated a program to identify and mark all mined areas in their area of operations. A mine awareness component is included in the Ministry of Health’s “Safe Gardens Project,” initiated in August 2000. The Syrian Campaign to Ban Landmines was launched on 4 July 2000.

United Arab Emirates. In March 2001 the United Arab Emirates announced its intention to donate $50 million to help redevelop South Lebanon, which includes funding for mine clearance.

Other

Northern Iraq (Iraqi Kurdistan). From 1997 to mid-2001 over 7 million square meters of land was cleared under the Mine Action Program with over 70 percent of that land cleared during 2000 and 2001. The MAP spent approximately $20 million in 2000 and has a budget of about $30 million in 2001. In 2000, the Mines Advisory Group cleared fourteen minefields, and declared safe 702,111 square meters of land. Norwegian People’s Aid cleared seven minefields and a total of 449,778 square meters of land. According to the UN, known UXO and mine explosions caused an average of 56 casualties per month in 2000 and 31 per month in 2001.

Palestine. It appears that Israel has continued to use antipersonnel mines in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. There have been allegations of mine use by Palestinians as well. The Defense for Children International/Palestine Section’s mine awareness campaign continued, as more than 70 mine awareness sessions took place in 2000. DCI/PS, in cooperation with the Palestinian National Security Forces, also erected a fence and put warning signs around the Qabatia minefield. In August 2000, the UK-based Mines Advisory Group completed an assessment of mined areas around the village of Husan.

Western Sahara. Polisario and Morocco traded accusations of new mine use. A mine awareness education program conducted by Norwegian People’s Aid ended in May 2000.