International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL)
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Stockpile Destruction

Under Article 4 of the Mine Ban Treaty, each State Party is obligated to destroy all stockpiled antipersonnel mines it owns or possesses, or that are under its jurisdiction or control, as soon as possible but no later than four years after the entry into force of the treaty for that State Party.

PMN Mines Destroyed

Lithuania destroyed its last 340 PMN antipersonnel mines at a military base in Pabrade, 40 km from the capital Vilnius, in June 2004. Photo: S. Brigot

Stockpile destruction is essential "preventive mine action". It concretely demonstrates full commitment to a comprehensive ban on antipersonnel landmines, and it ensures no future use and no future victims.

The Four-Year Deadline: A Crucial Treaty Obligation

Every state should be able to meet a four-year deadline with appropriate political will, planning and, if needed, assistance. There is no extension possible for the deadline. Missing the deadline of this vital core obligation is a serious violation of the treaty. Both stockpiling countries and other States Parties that can assist with destruction have responsibilities to ensure compliance with this obligation.

If a state misses the deadline, it must provide maximum transparency about the reasons for missing it, and it must have concrete plans to complete destruction as soon as possible, with a definitive new deadline.

Stockpile Destruction Must Be Transparent

It is important that stockpile destruction be transparent and witnessed by civil society, the media, government representatives and members of the diplomatic community. It can be a confidence-building measure as well, to invite neighboring countries to view this once-stockpiled weapon go up in smoke, deliberately.

States Parties should report on and seek help in addressing any technical problems in destroying stockpiles. They should report on foreign stockpiles, even if not under their jurisdiction or control.

Mines Discovered After Completion of Stockpile Destruction

States Parties that discover, capture, seize or receive additional antipersonnel mines after they have finished their formal stockpile destruction program must use Forms B and G of the Transparency Reports and treaty meetings to report on the discovery and destruction of these additional stocks.