States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty must complete within ten years the clearance of all areas contaminated with antipersonnel mines. States facing exceptional circumstances may request an extension to their deadline.

Extension Requests

States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty must complete within ten years the clearance of all areas contaminated with antipersonnel mines.

While all mine-affected states must do their best to respect their deadline, the treaty allows them to request one or more deadline extensions. This was supposed to be for exceptional cases like ongoing conflict or very high levels of contamination.

So far, an alarmingly large number of states have been granted extensions. Several requests would probably not have been needed if the work had started earlier or had been more efficient. Funding shortfalls have been another major challenge.

Requests are assessed during annual Meetings of States Parties, where detailed analyses prepared by the Committee on Article 5 are made available. The ICBL issues critiques of each request to inform the decisions of States Parties.


ICBL CALLS

To States Parties requesting extensions:

•    Explain the exceptional circumstances that lead to requesting an extension
•    Provide reliable information on how much land remains to be cleared, with a plan and a budget for clearing it as soon as possible
•    Only request the minimum number of years strictly needed to complete clearance

To States Parties deciding on requests:

•    Review the requests and the comments from the Comittee on Article 5, the ICBL and other stakeholders
•    Raise questions, especially when the request does not show ambition to complete clearance “as soon as possible”
•    Make sure the final decision points out any concerns, lists milestones and requires regular reporting
•    Ask requesting states to resubmit an updated work plan in the future if they fall significantly behind the original plan or if completion can be done faster than expected.