Third Session of the Review Conference of the States Parties
to the 1980 Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on
the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May be
Deemed to be Excessively Injurious or to Have
At the outset of the final session of the Review Conference, the ICRC once more called – unsuccessfully – for the word 'primarily' to be removed from the definition of an anti-personnel mine. Despite public opinion surveys in twenty-one countries showing enormous support for a total ban on antipersonnel mines, States Parties, after last-minute negotiations, adopted by consensus Protocol II as amended on 3 May 1996. This text imposed stricter rules on the use of anti-personnel mines but did not prohibit their use. The ICRC expressed strong disappointment with the modest restrictions on use and warned that they were likely to have little impact on reducing the level of civilian landmine casualties. In the words of the ICRC Vice-President, Eric Roethlisberger, 'The horrific numbers of landmine victims of recent years are set to continue unless governments squarely face their humanitarian responsibilities and do far more than required by the agreement adopted today.'
President of the International Committee of the Red Cross
Review Conference of the States Parties to the 1980 Convention on Prohibitions
or Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May be
Deemed to be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects
Third Session, April/May 1996
22 April 1996
I come here today to raise with distinguished delegates an issue which I believe is of fundamental importance to the success of this Review Conference and to global efforts to end the landmine scourge.