Contribution of Funds for OAS's Anti-personnel Landmine Clearance Activities in Central America

August 30, 1999

  1. On August 30 (Mon), the Government of Japan decided to contribute 45,000 U.S. dollars to the Organization of American States, which is destroying anti-personnel landmines in Central America, to help its activities. At the Fourth Japan-Central America Dialogue and Cooperation Forum now being held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tokyo, the Government of Japan announced this decision to the representatives of Central American countries taking part in the Forum.

  2. Anti-personnel landmines in Central America, most of which were laid during civil wars, are still hampering reconstruction in these countries. The contribution of this fiscal year is to give financial assistance to OAS for its mine-clearance activities, taking account of the fact that landmines exposed by Hurricane Mitch in November last year are still threatening the people's daily lives and hampering hurricane disaster rehabilitation such as bridge building.

  3. The Government of Japan has actively been promoting an international effort to clear landmines and to support their victims. At the First Meeting of States Parties to the Ottawa Convention against Anti-personnel Landmines held in May this year in Maputo, Mozambique, Japan pledged its active contribution in this field from the viewpoint of the Human Security. The present contribution to the OAS will be a part of Japan's contribution to mine clearance and victim assistance.

  4. In its general assembly in 1992, the OAS decided to establish a special fund to accept contributions for the clearance of landmines and other mines in Central America, and set up a Special Fund for Mine Clearing in Central America. Japan donated to the Fund 100,000 U.S. dollars both in 1992 and 1996, 50,000 U.S. dollars in 1997 and 45,000 U.S. dollars in 1998. Including this fifth donation, the cumulative total of Japan's donation to the Fund will come to 340,000 U.S. dollars.

  5. The Japan-Central America Dialogue and Cooperation Forum is an annual consultation at a Vice-Minister level between Japan and Central American countries. The Fourth Forum is being held on August 30 and 31 at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tokyo. Attending the Forum are Mr. Takahiko Horimura, Director-General of the Latin American and Caribbean Affairs Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and others from Japan; the Vice-Ministers of the Central American countries of Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Costa Rica, and Honduras, and also the Vice-Minister of the Dominican Republic, which is interested in strengthening its relations with Central American countries. During the two-day Forum, there will be wide-ranging discussions covering such issues as political and economic relations between Japan and Central America, the integration process of Central America, Japan's cooperation with Central America, and Japan's cooperation with these countries in various international fora.

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