Statement by H. E. Yoshiki Mine
Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Japan
to the Conference on Disarmament

The 10th Session of the CCW Group of Governmental Experts

Geneva, 7 March 2005

Mr. Chairman,

Allow me to congratulate you on your assumption of the chairmanship as the Chairman-designate of the Meeting of the States Parties to CCW. I assure you the full support of my delegation. I am confident that, under your wise guidance, the group will be able to engage in effective and efficient deliberations. Allow me also to appreciate the two coordinators, distinguished ambassador Markku Reimaa and distinguished ambassador Jayant Prasad for their tireless and ever advancing efforts.

Mr. Chairman,
I would like to refer to a couple of points of importance to begin our deliberations on mine-related issues. First, Japan believes that CCW remains the most appropriate framework for the international community to address the humanitarian and socio-economic problems posed by Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines, and we should continue to pay adequate attention to the balance between defense and humanitarian concerns.

We must achieve a tangible result on Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines this year, considering that we have examined the related issues for such a long time. It is the time to start negotiation. Particularly, a protocol on Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines among others needs focal attention.

The paper which was prepared by the coordinator for Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines has been most helpful in our deliberations on the regulations of Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines. Its most recent version does reflect many points which were submitted in the last meeting, and yet it is more simplified. Japan believes that it can serve as a useful basis for the advancement of our exercise. We sincerely hope that broad consensus will be reached on the early creation of a new protocol on Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines.

A booklet was published last year by the Geneva International Center for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD). It is an interesting study which can help us to better understand the actual situations of the damages caused by Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines. The damages inflicted on the people by Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines are different from that by Anti-Personnel Mines. In order to create an effective Protocol on Mines Other Than Anti-Personnel Mines, we must understand and address the specific features of damages caused by different kind of mines.

Legal experts have been invited to participate in this year's session of the Working Group on Explosive Remnants of War, including one from my own country. Japan hopes that the participation by such experts will contribute to enriching our discussions on the implementation of international humanitarian law concerning the use of cluster munitions. Furthermore, we hope the presence of legal experts will enable us to engage in extensive discussions on possible technical preventive measures of cluster munitions.

Lastly, in order to ensure the effectiveness of the treaty, a comprehensive compliance mechanism is indispensable. Mr. Chairman, you indicated in the new paper a possible amalgamation of the proposals of South Africa and European Union based on the comments by countries. In this regard, I would like to stress that we must take into account such factors as ensuring enforcement, reliability of scheme, burdens on the States Parties, while also paying adequate attention to the sovereignty of States. Japan is committed to actively participate in the process.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Related Information (Arms Control, Disarmament and Non-Proliferation)
Delegation of Japan to the Conference on Disarmament Official Web Siteother site

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