The View covers breaking news and media on the Cartagena Summit on a Mine-Free World.

From November 30th to December 4th, 2009, hundreds of international organizations will meet in Cartagena, Colombia to assess the impact of the 1997 Ottawa Treaty, a watershed agreement between states and nations to ban all anti-personnel mines.

The blog is an initiative of Survivor Corps, a leading advocate for the rights of conflict survivors. Created by landmine survivors, Survivor Corps believes those who have survived war are most invested in building peace.

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    Cartagena Summit

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    International Campaign to Ban Landmines

    Cluster Munition Coalition

    Mine Ban Treaty

    Obama’s Opportunity to Lead a Landmine-Free World

    By Queen Noor of Jordan

    The following article ran in The Huffington Post on Thursday, December 3rd.

    For twelve years, the United States has refused to ban a weapon that kills and mutilates innocent women, men and children even in peacetime. The time has come for the world’s most powerful high-tech military to give up its low-tech stockpile of ten million antipersonnel landmines.

    Today there are millions of mines buried in over 80 countries, and over 160 million more stored in arsenals waiting to go in the ground. These indiscriminate devices lay dormant until detonated by something living — a child walking to school, a farmer or grazing livestock. One victim at a time, these ‘weapons of mass destruction in slow motion’ have killed in total more people than nuclear, chemical and biological weapons combined. If they don’t cause immediate death, they maim and blind their victims.

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    December 04, 2009, 12:38pm   Comments

    Cartagena Updates Part Deux: Quad Rugby, Victim Assistance, U.S. Delegation

    Quad Rugby? Huge success! Thanks to Nerina and Riley for organizing the event, and to Nate for his awesome video.

    In other news:

    • Tirza, Ramiz, and Kim give presentations on victim assistance.
    • Ken Rutherford speaks with the U.S. delegation (who are reviewing, not opposing the treaty)
    • Shireen makes some royal connections in Middle East lobbying.

    Read Tirza’s full update after the jump.

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    December 03, 2009, 11:48am   Comments

    We were all excited to witness this long-awaited occasion, the day our government officially declared Rwanda a mine-free country.

    The bombs which had littered our schools, markets, bridges, and coffee lands were terrifying and deadly reminders of the Tutsi genocide of 1994.  Once again, our children may walk to school without fear, our farmers may grow coffee without fear, and all may finally enjoy the peace, and peace of mind, that this news has brought us.

    I would like to thank everyone at Survivor Corps for all they have done to assist victims of genocide and landmines.  Above all, congratulations to the people of Rwanda and our government for this wonderful accomplishment. We may now move on to focus on victim assistance, to heal those injured by the past.

    Albert Nzamukwereka, Rwanda Country Coordinator, responding to the government’s declaration that Rwanda is finally mine-free.

    December 02, 2009, 6:15pm   Comments

    On International Day of Persons with Disabilities, ICBL and CMC urge governments to end landmine suffering

    The International Campaign to Ban Landmines and Cluster Munition Coalition have issued the following press release, which provides detailed information about Cartagena Summit, the Mine Ban Treaty, and their histories. Although targeted at educating government officials, this is an excellent source for anyone seeking background information on these topics or links to other resources.

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    December 02, 2009, 5:22pm   Comments

    U.S. State Department Pledges Support, Funding for Anti-landmine Campaign

    In a statement delivered at Cartagena Summit on Monday, the U.S. delegation explained its attendance of the conference as part of “an on-going comprehensive review of U.S. landmine policy.” They emphasized the country’s shared commitment to eliminating the humanitarian risks posed by landmines, as exhibited by its past contributions of over $1.5 billion toward humanitarian mine action and removing explosive remnants of war in 47 countries. Read the full text of the statement here.

    As apart of this initiative, the State Department announced that the United States will increase funding towards Colombia’s humanitarian mine action assistance. “The United States has been Colombia’s leading financial contributor since 2007, and plans to deliver an additional $2 million in support in 2010.”  See the press release for more details.

    December 02, 2009, 3:11pm   Comments

    Get ready to Rumble in Cartagena!

    • Event: “Rumble in Cartagena” Quad Rugby Match
    • Hosted by: Survivor Corps, the ICBL, the CMC and Fundacion Arcangeles
    • Date: Wednesday, December 2
    • Time: 6:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
    • Location: Colegio Salesianos

    December 3 marks the anniversary of the signing of both the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention and the Convention on Cluster Munitions as well as International Day of Persons with Disabilities. On the eve of this day, a celebratory event will take place that weaves a memorable sports game with words by key figures in promoting victim assistance and the rights of persons with disabilities. After the game, spectators will have the chance to have a hands-on experience with quad rugby. They will be encouraged to jump in the chairs and have a friendly game with the athletes. The exhibition will end with a cocktail and live music.

    For more information: olivia@icbl.org

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    December 02, 2009, 12:01pm   Comments

    Rumble In Cartagena: Trailer

    December 02, 2009, 10:20am  Comments

    Meet the Survivor Corps Cartagena Team: Tirza Leibowitz

    Tirza Leibowitz leads the rights advocacy team, carrying out the Survivor Campaign for Disability Rights and promoting the rights of conflict survivors worldwide.  Before joining Survivor Corps, Leibowitz worked as Legal Advisor at Bizchut–The Israel Human Rights Center for People with Disabilities.  She spearheaded efforts to influence legislation, litigation, and the public forum, which resulted in major advances in disability rights in Israel, such as accessibility, living in the community, inclusion in education, and access to justice.  Leibowitz brings to Survivor Corps extensive experience in rights advocacy both on the national and international front.  She holds an LLB from Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

    December 01, 2009, 6:06pm   Comments

    "As this map shows, there is still a long way to go before the world is free of anti-personnel landmines. The countries worst-affected are those which have experienced wars in the past 20 years. Some armed groups continue to use them." - BBC News

    "As this map shows, there is still a long way to go before the world is free of anti-personnel landmines. The countries worst-affected are those which have experienced wars in the past 20 years. Some armed groups continue to use them." - BBC News

    December 01, 2009, 4:18pm  Comments

    Rwanda becomes landmine-free!

    Rwanda now ranks among the few countries to become completely mine-free!  The announcement is to be made at the Cartagena Summit on a Mine-Free World in Colombia.

    From BBC News:

    Hundreds of people have been killed and horrifically injured by landmines in Rwanda.

    Landmines were laid between 1990 and 1994 in Rwanda and over the past three years more than over 9,000 have been destroyed by Rwandan soldiers.

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    December 01, 2009, 3:34pm   Comments