Remarks: 4th Review Conference of State Parties to the Anti-Personal Mine Ban Convention
4th Review Conference of State Parties to the Anti-Personal Mine Ban Convention, Oslo, 25-29 November 2019.
Agenda Item 8
Presentation of Request Submitted under Article 5.
Remarks of Mr. Adem O. Idris
Chargé d’affaires a.i. of the Embassy and Permanent Mission of the State of Eritrea to the UN and other international organizations in Geneva
Oslo, 26 November 2019
Thank you, Mr. President, for giving me the floor.
At the onset, I would like to thank Norway for hosting such a successful conference and congratulate the newly elected vice chairs and the Secretary General for assuming their respective mandates and responsibilities. At the same time, I would like to pay tribute to the previous vice Chairs for a job well done. Special thanks also goes to the ISU for working closely with my country throughout the period and for their valuable contribution including in the preparation of this request that made today’s discussion a reality.
I also would like to recall to a number of fruitful meetings we had with your excellency, the Chair of Article 5 Implementing Committee and the vice chairs.
Mr. President, distinguished heads of delegations, excellencies, ladies and gentlemen,
As the request has already been posted in the website, I will not repeat the same but to add the following remarks to put the request into a context.
As a matter of historical fact, Eritrea, unfortunately has gone through two protracted wars that could be characterized as the longest wars in Africa. The causalities in terms of martyrdom and disabilities of both combats exceed one hundred thousand. No doubt, many of them are victims of anti-personal mine. No doubt, the pain of the victims is shared by the strong bonded Eritrean society at large.
On reporting obligations in general, Eritrea has been gregariously engaged in treaty body reporting to meet its regional and international obligations. Nevertheless, reporting needs the necessary manpower, viable institutions and material resources. The kind of report under discussion for which my delegation is asking for extension also demands conducive security environment. During the period of the present request, the border area was heavily militarized and potentially contaminated sites were beyond the reach of the demining authority for all practical purposes.
Moreover, the Deming Authority which is responsible for preparing the request and undertake the necessary work is under review and is expected to be restructured to respond to future needs and challenges.
The good news, however, is that the region is coming out of war and aggression as declared in the agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia a year and 5 months ago. The historic rapprochement which set a new horizon of hope and prosperity in an environment of peace and different level of security in the region that will greatly contribute to mine free region.
In conclusion, Mr. President, I assure you that our dream is to nurture a society which undertakes its daily activities without fear of any kind. However, the necessary policy decision has to be realistic to meet the needs and aspirations. Given the good news, my Government will not spare any effort to take stock of the opportunity to honour the convention and fulfill its promise in the interest of its subjects.
Mr. President, Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen,
I appeal to the conference to approve the request of my delegation in light of the above and in recognition of reality and future engagements.
I thank you