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Community maps in Mozambique showing contamination drawn by women. Photo courtesy of UNDP/Rebecca Roberts.

Convention (APMBC), transforming international mine ac-

as well as separating both from field operations, are all from

tion. First, it established an obligation for each mine-affected

this period. During the first years of the APMBC until the

State Party to remove all known minefields from its territory,

First Review Conference in 2004, most countries with histor-

as well as a provision that each State Party in a position to do

ic mine problems established national UNDP-supported pro-

so would provide assistance for such efforts. Although the im-

grams with the exception of those coming out of immediate

plication was not immediately clear to all, this implied a long-

conflicts, which more often had UNMAS-managed programs.

term effort to clear every mine rather than simply make each

Initially it was expected that UNMAS would have opera-

country safe. Second, the United Nations, NGOs, and com-

tional responsibility for peacekeeping mine action programs,

mercial demining firms understood that international mine

which UNOPS would implement to provide continuity, then

action would continue for many years, and that they should

hand over to UNDP as each program’s mission ended. This

organize themselves accordingly. UNMAS and the dedicated

changed for several reasons:

mine action units of UNDP, UNOPS, and UNICEF were established during this period, as was the Geneva International Centre






International Mine Action Standards (IMAS), the dedicated Information Management System for Mine Action (IMSMA), and the institutional model of separating the national mine action entity for operational management from that of policy,



1. There were delays in UNDP picking up some national programs.

2. UNMAS staff believed they were more effective at re-

sponding to mine problems than UNDP or national bureaucracies.

3. UNMAS involvement typically was accompanied by much greater donor resources than those UNDP could attract.

The Journal of Conventional Weapons Destruction Issue 20.3  
The Journal of Conventional Weapons Destruction Issue 20.3  

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