Prince Harry joined MAG and The HALO Trust at a joint event held at Kensington Palace last night, calling for governments worldwide to deliver on their promise to rid the world of landmines by 2025.
Prince Harry spoke at the ‘The Landmine Free 2025’ reception, held in the 20th anniversary year of the signing of the Ottawa Treaty (the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Treaty or Mine Ban Treaty).
It is 20 years since images of Diana, Princess of Wales, walking though minefields in Angola and Bosnia helped raise awareness of the global issue. Her work, much of it behind the scenes, helped make the Treaty, to which 162 nation states including the UK are signatories, a reality. Since then, 27 countries have been declared landmine-free, over 51 million stockpiled landmines have been destroyed and the global trade has ground to a halt. Yet more than 60 million people still live with the daily fear of unexploded munitions.
“Nearly forty percent of the people injured or killed by landmines every year are children, who often fall victim while innocently playing or travelling to and from school. Twenty years on from the landmark Mine Ban Treaty, these indiscriminate weapons still blight the lives of far too many people around the world.
Yet, with the sort of commitment and ambition shown today, ridding the world of this problem is far from impossible. If other donors follow the UK’s lead in recommitting to support the vital job of landmine clearance, the goal set by Treaty signatories of a landmine free world by 2025 is totally achievable.”
Jane Cocking, Chief Executive of MAG
MAG International Communications Manager and Photographer, Sean Sutton, joined Charlie Stayt and Louise Minchin for BBC Breakfast this morning to talk about reaching a Landmine Free 2025 and how we are now in a race against time to deal with the new landmine emergency in Iraq.
If you missed it live, catch up on BBC iPlayer here (interview at 1 hour 39 minutes)