Magdy Martínez-Solimán: Statement delivered at the launch of the Development and Mine Action Support Framework

Jul 12, 2016

I am very pleased to chair this first Briefing on Development and Mine Action (DMA). The timing of this event is important. It has been a very busy year for all of us: in January, the Evaluation of UNDP’s contribution to Mine Action and UNDP’s subsequent Management Response were presented to the UNDP Executive Board. We have finalized UNDP’s Development and Mine Action Support Framework and will be rolling out the Global project on Development and Mine Action starting now.  

Thus, it is an opportune time for UNDP to share experiences on how mine action can be best linked to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and how Development and Mine Action efforts contribute to the implementation of the UNDP’s Strategic Plan (2014-2017). UNDP’s Development and Mine Action Support Framework provides answers to both of these questions.

Background to UNDP Support to Mine Action

UNDP has been working on Mine Action in over 50 countries for more than 20 years.
Our main focus was supporting national policy and institutional frameworks, as well as capacity building on Mine Action;
Future UNDP Mine Action support to programme countries will have one message:  Linking Mine Action and development

Key Findings and Conclusions of Evaluation

In January 2016, the Independent Evaluation Office presented the Evaluation of UNDP’s contribution to Mine Action to the UNDP Executive Board. The evaluation clearly noted that UNDP is a major player in mine action.

We particularly appreciated the recognition that UNDP is a “significant contributor to mine action within the UN Secretary-General’s Mine Action Strategy (2013-2018)”, in particular Objective 1 on reducing risks and socio-economic impact of landmines/Explosive Remnants of War, and Objective 3 on building capacity of national institutions. What does this mean?

  • We help address the development impact of landmines; and
  • We help national partners deal with the problem.

UNDP’s Management Response

We are committed to supporting national governments in key areas, such as institutional capacity building, land release prioritization, and mainstreaming mine action into development.

UNDP’s Development and Mine Action Framework

There is a renewed focus on eradicating landmines and Explosive Remnants of Wars, an ethical push to make the world free of landmines. In addition, the international community has a more focused agenda on sustainable development (Agenda 2030).  

UNDP’s Development and Mine Action Framework demonstrates synergies between mine action related work and livelihoods and poverty reduction programmes. In the Support Framework, we have highlighted Mine Action as a critical factor in restoring livelihoods capacities and building resilience to shocks and stresses.

UNDP’s Development and Mine Action support programmes will have three major areas of focus.

1) First, translating mine action into sustainable development dividends, including human, food or community security and livelihoods:

-    empowering and protecting people and their communities;
-    restoring livelihoods; and
-    supporting peacebuilding, recovery and development.  

    UNDP will establish strong linkages between this goal and the issues of environmental sustainability, governance, gender and resilience.

2) Second, strengthening national institutions that accelerate development benefits

UNDP’s interventions will focus on capacity building of national institutions in line with broader development priorities.This will include technical support to affected States, support to the development of national information management systems, and advocacy for the inclusion of mine action in national development plans and budgets.

3) And third, supporting international normative frameworks on mine action

UNDP will advocate for instruments that prohibit, or regulate the use of weapons that contravene International Humanitarian Law, with the aim to protect lives and livelihoods and contribute to peace-building and conflict prevention.

In particular, our programmes will focus on the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling,  Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction; the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities; and the Convention on Cluster Munitions; and other conventions important for  mine action.

Link to UN/DP Strategic Plan and SDGs

Mine action contributes to poverty eradication, peace-building, and conflict prevention.

UNDP’s Development and Mine Action initiatives will contribute to the implementation of the SDGs. Thus, by increasing livelihood opportunities, particularly for landmine survivors, we will contribute to SDG 1 on ending poverty, SDG2 on ending hunger and achieving food security and SDG 8 on inclusive economic growth.

By providing more opportunities to marginalized landmine-affected communities, SDG 10 on reducing inequality will be promoted. Also, contribution to SDG 16 (promoting just, inclusive and peaceful societies) will come from removing landmines and reducing the number of new landmine accidents/victims. Mine action contributes to leaving no one behind!

Partnerships and Internal Structure

Looking internally, we will have to make sure that our organizational structure allows us to deliver on Development and Mine Action commitment.

Since the beginning of 2016, we have established a Global team within UNDP BPPS (HQ and Regional Hub). The team provides global guidance, policy development and programmatic support to COs, advocacy and inter-agency cooperation.

 Our work would be impossible without our Country Offices who do the heavy lifting on a daily basis.

Conclusion

I would like to thank the Member States and colleagues from the UN family for strong collaboration with us on Development and Mine Action. UNDP is and will remain a faithful partner on mine action. Now that our Development and Mine Action Framework is ready, we will proceed with its implementation.

A world without mines is simply a better world. To those who have suffered, we owe a better future.  To those at risk, we have to offer   energetic action.  To those who can transform mine fields to livelihoods,  safe roads to go to school, to work, or to the next village, we offer partnership.

And to all, we ask to build a broad coalition where the one thing we leave behind is the use and threat of landmines to our brothers, sisters, elders, and children.

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