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Country Reports
United Arab Emirates, Landmine Monitor Report 2003
In Arabic (As PDF)

United Arab Emirates

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has not acceded to the Mine Ban Treaty. While the government has not articulated its position on the treaty or the mine issue in the past year, the UAE has previously stated that it supports “the international effort to ban antipersonnel landmines.”[1] In November 2002, UAE voted in favor of UN General Assembly Resolution 57/74, calling for universalization of the Mine Ban Treaty, as it had done on similar pro-ban resolutions in previous years. Representatives of the UAE did not attend any Mine Ban Treaty meetings in the reporting period.

On 15 January 2003, a symposium on humanitarian demining was held under the auspices of the Minister of Foreign Affairs and President of the Red Crescent Society. The symposium was the first meeting on landmines organized in the UAE and included a call for the universalization of the Mine Ban Treaty in its final recommendations. Participants included representatives of the UN Mine Action Service, UN Office for Project Services, the International Committee of the Red Cross, the Geneva International Center for Humanitarian Demining, and the Swiss Foundation for Mine Action.[2]

The UAE has stated that it is not a landmine producer or exporter of antipersonnel mines.[3] It remains one of the few countries for which Landmine Monitor does not have a clear indication on whether antipersonnel mines are stockpiled.

The UAE is not mine-affected. It has contributed to international mine action programs in Egypt, Kosovo, Lebanon, and Sri Lanka. In 2002, UAE contributed $10,000 for mine action operations by the Swiss Foundation for Mine Action in Sri Lanka.[4] In 2001, the UAE pledged up to $50 million to mine action in the formerly occupied parts of South Lebanon. It is not known how much of that total the UAE contributed in 2002, but under the program known as “Operation Emirates Solidarity,” it has funded mine clearance, survey and risk education activities. On 6 May 2003, UAE Army Day, a documentary film on “Emirates Solidarity in Lebanon” was presented in a ceremony in Abu Dhabi.[5]

In January 2003, a vehicle escorting a hunting party including the UAE’s Minister of Finance and other members of the royal family hit a landmine in the Cholistan desert in Pakistan near the border with India. The blast reportedly killed a servant of the deputy ruler of Dubai, and injured a driver and another passenger.[6]

[1] Letter to Landmine Monitor (HRW) from the UAE Foreign Ministry, 5 October 2000. Translated by the UAE Embassy, Washington DC.
[2] The seminar was conducted at the Zayed Center for Coordination, see www.zccf.org.ae
[3] Letter from the UAE Foreign Ministry, 5 October 2000.
[4] Interview with Alex van Roy, Chief Technical Advisor Mine Action, UNDP, Colombo (Sri Lanka), 3 April 2003; Daily News (Sri Lankan newspaper) 29 October 2002, p. 13.
[5] Al-Ittihad (daily newspaper), 14 May 2003, p. 10.
[6] “Pakistani dies as jeep in UAE royal convoy hits landmine,” Agence France Presse (Multan), 26 January 2003; “Servant of United Arab Emirates royal family killed, two others injured in Pakistan land mine accident,” Associated Press (Multan), 26 January 2003.