U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
Other State Department Archive SitesU.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
Home Issues & Press Travel & Business Countries Youth & Education Careers About State Video
 You are in: Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security > Bureau of Political-Military Affairs > Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement (WRA) > Safe Passage Newsletter

Mine Action MESSENGER, August 2003

Get Acrobat Reader PDF version   

Released by the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs
August 2003
Banner: Volume 1, Issue 1

In This Issue:

  • Partners Find State Department Support Helpful
  • Message from Special Representative Bloomfield: New Steps To Prevent Conflict
  • New Partners Aid Armenia, Mozambique
  • Third Annual Night of a Thousand Dinners Set for November 6
  • New Group To Aid Cambodia Mine Action
  • Roots of Peace Aids Afghanistan’s Fruited Plain
  • What's up, doc?
  • Partner News Briefs

Blue line
Partners Find State Department Support Helpful

Mine-action partners benefit in many ways from the U.S. State Department’s Office of Mine Action Initiatives and Partnerships (MAIP), a survey confirms. The survey, sent to 35 partners over the last six months, is part of MAIP’s ongoing effort to measure the effectiveness of its partnership program.
[full story]
 
Blue line
Message from Special Representative Bloomfield:  New Steps To Prevent Conflict
 
Lincoln P. Bloomfield, Jr., Special Representative of the President and Secretary of State for Mine Action and Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs. State Department photo."Small arms and light weapons in the wrong hands threaten civilians in many ways. In unstable regions, an illicit supply of small arms and light weapons can tip political disputes into armed conflict. Combatants may confront civilians in a bid to intimidate, plunder or undertake ethnic cleansing. An abundance of such weapons in a conflict zone can block effective diplomacy or peacekeeping."
[full story
 
 
Blue line
New Partners Aid Armenia, Mozambique

From left: Michael W. Sonnenfeldt, Co-Chair and Founder of the Humpty Dumpty Institute; Dr. Garo Armen, Founder and President of Children of Armenia Fund; Lincoln P. Bloomfield Jr., Special Representative of the President and Secretary of State for Mine Action; Armen Yedigarian, Deputy Charge of Mission of the Armenian Embassy; Jernej Cimpersek, Director of the International Trust Fund for Demining and Mine Victims Assistance; Gen. Gordon R. Sullivan, U.S. Army, Ret., Chairman Emeritus of the Marshall Legacy Institute; Mary Ann Kibarian, Executive Director of Children of Armenia Fund; Ralph L. Cwerman, President and Board Member of Humpty Dumpty Institute; and Donald Patierno, Director, U.S. Department of State’s Office of Humanitarian Demining Programs. Photo courtesy Humpty Dumpty Institute.With the U.S. Department of State’s historic Treaty Room as backdrop, Children of Armenia Fund (COAF) and SkyLink Aviation Inc. in June presented checks of $100,000 each to support mine action in Armenia and Mozambique. COAF’s donation will help pay for a team of mine-detecting dogs in Armenia, while SkyLink’s gift will fund training and modern equipment in Mozambique.
[full story]
 

Blue line
Third Annual Night of a Thousand Dinners Set for November 6
 
Logo: Night of A Thousand Dinners.One of mine action’s biggest yearly fundraisers, Night of a Thousand Dinners, will be held on Thursday, November 6. Co-sponsored by Adopt-A-Minefield and the Canadian Landmine Foundation, the event unfolds at venues around the world.
[full story]
 
 

Blue line
New Group To Aid Cambodia Mine Action

Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage, second row third from right, and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kara Bue, front row second from right, and members of Freedom Fields USA. State Department photo.Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage (second row third from right) and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kara Bue (front row second from right) join members of new partner Freedom Fields USA during a recent visit to the State Department. The group, based in Carmel, California, aims to raise $200,000 for humanitarian mine action in Cambodia.


Blue line
Roots of Peace Aids Afghanistan’s Fruited Plain

Roots of Peace Founder Heidi Kuhn and Afghan President Hamid Karzai. Photo courtesy Nadia Tarzi-Saccardi.Grapes may someday flourish again on Afghanistan’s Shomali Plains thanks to Roots of Peace. The group's "Mines to Vines" initiative enables farmers to replant demined fields.
[full story]

 


Blue line
What's up, doc?

Image of cartoon characters, Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck, with Rith, a fictional Cambodian boy who has lost a leg to a persistent landmine. Image courtesy Warner Bros.

The U.S. Department of State and USAID have teamed with Warner Bros. to promote mine awareness through the use of cartoon characters familiar to children. Here, Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck join Rith, a fictional Cambodian boy who has lost a leg to a persistent landmine.



Blue line
Partner News Briefs

  • South Florida Activity: Conference planned for Jan. 23-25, 2004;
  • New Fellowship: Rotary International seeks to form fellowship to promote mine action;
  • Mine Action Conference: State Department and several colleges and universities plan conference in Massachusetts;
  • Run for Mine Action: Activist helps people run marathons;  
  • Service Learning Institute: New institute aims to help educators teach about mine action projects.

[full stories]

Blue line
Partners Find State Department Support Helpful

Mine-action partners benefit in many ways from the U.S. State Department’s Office of Mine Action Initiatives and Partnerships (MAIP), a survey confirms.  The survey, sent to 35 partners over the last six months, is part of MAIP’s ongoing effort to measure the effectiveness of its partnership program.

MAIP engages civil society through speaking engagements, conferences, publications and media events. It provides letters of support, videos, maps and other visual aids, and serves as an information resource.

Partners particularly value MAIP’s presence at fundraising events as demonstration of the government’s appreciation for what American citizens are doing. Said one partner, “What you say in your speech is important, but what really counts is that someone from Washington took the time to come out here and say thank you.”

MAIP, which is part of the State Department’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, has fostered partnerships between groups that might otherwise have never met. Several mine-action organizations expressed appreciation to MAIP for connecting them with new donors.

Donors do a lot of fundraising on their own, but some of their success can be attributed to MAIP help. A rough estimate from survey data shows MAIP had a part in generating more than $10 million in private-sector contributions for mine action in the past five years.

Donors also highlighted the support and exposure that MAIP has brought to Night of a Thousand Dinners, a yearly fundraiser for mine action by Adopt-A-Minefield and the Canadian Landmine Foundation. In the past two years, more than 2,000 dinners were held and $2.3 million raised, including dinners at the State Department hosted by Secretary Colin Powell and at 20 U.S. embassies.

Partners particularly value MAIP’s ability to organize and fund conferences that allow them to showcase their programs. The Seattle Conference with Rotary International gathered 250 Rotarians from 25 countries for what many said was the best mine-action event they had ever attended. Additional conferences are planned for this fall in Massachusetts and early next year in Florida.

Blue line 
New Steps To Prevent Conflict
By Lincoln P. Bloomfield, Jr.,
 Special Representative of the President and Secretary of State for Mine Action and Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs

Message from the Special Representative

It is my pleasure to introduce the Mine Action Messenger, the latest effort by the State Department’s Office of Mine Action Initiatives and Partnerships to support our many partners.

Several times a year, this newsletter will highlight your accomplishments. We invite you to contribute articles and photographs. The next issue comes out in December, so please send us your items as soon as possible, using the contact information on this page.

I want to take this opportunity to give you advance notice of an important new development; MAIP will soon combine efforts with the Office of Humanitarian Demining Programs and another unit that deals with small arms and light weapons, abandoned ordnance, and shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles. The new Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement will draw on the skills and knowledge of its predecessors to address these risks to civilians comprehensively.

Small arms and light weapons in the wrong hands threaten civilians in many ways. In unstable regions, an illicit supply of small arms and light weapons can tip political disputes into armed conflict. Combatants may confront civilians in a bid to intimidate, plunder or undertake ethnic cleansing. An abundance of such weapons in a conflict zone can block effective diplomacy or peacekeeping.

After a conflict, former combatants may put excess small arms and light weapons to criminal use—in kidnapping, extortion and human trafficking. The State Department conducts worldwide diplomacy and weapons destruction programs to address this problem.

Stockpiles of abandoned ordnance are another risk to civilians in conflict zones. Desperate people may try to defuse shells and other ordnance in hopes of selling the metal as scrap. It is critical to find and clear unexploded ordnance, once hostilities end.

Shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles are a particularly sensitive class of weapons that remain after a conflict ends. These man-portable aircraft defense systems (MANPADs), may cross borders and end up in the hands of international terrorists who can use them against passenger airliners. The G-8 Heads of State have underlined the need for concerted action to control this threat.

All of us are acutely aware of the harm persistent landmines inflict on civilians. They take innocent lives long after the fighting stops, and hinder post-conflict reconstruction and economic development.

All these post-war hazards threaten civilians in developing societies. By uniting its efforts to address these risks, our bureau plans to increase its efficiency and improve our approaches to protect civilians in places recovering from conflict.

We will continue our enthusiastic support of public-private partnerships in mine action. Thank you, in advance, for sharing your success stories with the Mine Action Messenger, and please keep up the great work you are already doing!

Blue line 
New Partners Aid Armenia, Mozambique

Treaty Room Ceremony Marks Pair of $100K Gifts for Mine Action

From left: Cwerman; Sonnenfeldt; Bloomfield; Surjit Babra, President of of SkyLink; Walter Arbib, Chief Executive and Director of SkyLink; and Ambassador Armand Panguene of Mozambique. Photo courtesy Humpty Dumpty Institute.With the U.S. Department of State’s historic Treaty Room as backdrop, Children of Armenia Fund (COAF) and SkyLink Aviation Inc. in June presented checks of $100,000 each to support mine action in Armenia and Mozambique.

Humpty Dumpty Institute (HDI), a long-standing partner of the State Department in mine action, helped arrange the contributions. COAF’s donation will help pay for a team of mine-detecting dogs in Armenia, while SkyLink’s gift will fund training and modern equipment in Mozambique.

“Thanks to today’s generous private sector participation, the governments of Armenia and Mozambique will be better equipped to protect their citizens from landmines and return more valuable land to productive use,” said Lincoln P. Bloomfield, Jr., Assistant Secretary of State and Special Representative of the President and Secretary of State for Mine Action.

Blue line 
Third Annual Night of a Thousand Dinners Set for November 6

Logo for Night of A Thousand Dinners, Soiree Des Mille Banquets.One of mine action’s biggest yearly fundraisers, Night of a Thousand Dinners, will be held on Thursday, November 6.

Co-sponsored by Adopt-A-Minefield and the Canadian Landmine Foundation, the event unfolds at venues around the world. Local groups organize dinners, with proceeds going to some of the most heavily mined countries.

Last year, 1,250 dinners worldwide raised $1.3 million for mine action.

Several of the dinners featured speakers from the U.S. State Department, which has a robust role in humanitarian mine action worldwide.

Adopt-A-Minefield, a program of the United Nations Association of the USA and the Better World Fund, supports mine action in Afghanistan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Cambodia, Croatia, Mozambique and Vietnam.

For more information, visit www.1000dinners.com or write Laura Kane at lkane@unausa.org.

Blue line
Roots of Peace Aids Afghanistan’s Fruited Plain

Grapes may someday flourish again on Afghanistan’s Shomali Plains thanks to Roots of Peace (ROP).

The group, whose "Mines to Vines" initiative enables farmers to replant demined fields, has teamed with Hermes of Paris and California vintners Robert Mondavi, Mike Grgich, Gina Gallo, Judy Jordan, Dede Wilsey and Silverado Vineyards to support demining in Afghanistan.

With ChevronTexaco's support, ROP is helping demining and replanting of rice in Cambodia. And Kyleigh Kuhn, teen daughter of ROP's founder, Heidi Kuhn, leads a "Pennies for Peace" drive to get Marin County youth to support humanitarian mine action.

For more information, visit www.rootsofpeace.org.

Blue line
Partner News Briefs

  • South Florida Activity
    The U.S. Department of State ’s Office of Mine Action Initiatives and Partnerships is planning a conference in Coconut Grove, Fla., Jan. 23-25, 2004. Experts will discuss progress and challenges in mine action, and representatives of the NGO community will highlight their programs. See
    www.maic.jmu.edu for details as they become available.

    Also, the South Florida Landmine Action Group (SFLAG) formed to promote landmine awareness in South Florida. SFLAG will focus on mine action in Central and South America. To learn more, visit www.sflag.org.

  • New Rotarian Fellowship
    Members of Rotary International are seeking to form a new fellowship to promote mine action. Their petition came out of Rotary International’s June conference in Brisbane, Australia, at which Donna Hopkins of MAIP spoke about the landmine problem. To learn more, visit
    www.for-mine-action.org.

  • Mine Action Conference
    MAIP is co-sponsoring a humanitarian demining conference in Northhampton, Mass., Nov. 14-16.

    The POLUS Center for Economic and Social Development and the consortium of Smith, Mt. Holyoke, Amherst and Hampshire colleges and the University of Massachusetts, are co-sponsors.

    For more information, contact Stacy Davis at DavisSB@state.gov or Stephen Meyers at smeyers@poluscenter.org.

  • Run for Mine Action
    Fernando Corredor of the United Nations Association-USA is available to help people run marathons to benefit mine action. He supplies a training packet for runners who commit to run as a team. You can reach him at
    Fernando@hellogoodtimes.com.

  • School Starts Institute
    Maret School in Washington, D.C., is starting a Service Learning Institute to help teachers incorporate mine action projects into lessons. Students are also raising $20,000 for mine action.

Blue line 
U.S. Department of State Mine Action Partners

United Nations Association of the United States of America; People to People International; Warner Bros.; DC Comics; Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation; United Nations Foundation; Mine Action Information Center; Landmine Survivors Network; Humpty Dumpty Institute; Roots of Peace; Marshall Legacy Institute; Center for Teaching International Relations; Southwest Missouri State Landmine Studies Program; HALO Trust; National Committee on American Foreign Policy and Huntington Associates; Clear Path International; Operation LMS; Save the Children; Center for International Rehabilitation; Polus Center for Social and Economic Development; Grapes for Humanity; Global Care Unlimited; PeaceTrees Vietnam; Prestige Health Care Technologies Ltd.; Health Volunteers Overseas; Wheelchair Foundation; Pan American Health Organization; Organization of American States; Royal Dutch/Shell Group of Companies; South Florida Landmine Action Group; Julia Burke Foundation; Maret School of Washington; Canadian Landmine Foundation; Golden West Humanitarian Foundation; One Sri Lanka Foundation; and DanChurchAid.

Blue line
More Information

For more information on mine action initiatives, please contact:

Bureau of Political-Military Affairs
Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement
U.S. Department of State

2201 C Street NW, Room 1826
Washington, DC  20520
Phone: (202) 647-0562
Fax: (202) 647-2465
E-mail:
SteveJE@state.gov

[Back to top]


  Back to top

U.S. Department of State
USA.govU.S. Department of StateUpdates  |   Frequent Questions  |   Contact Us  |   Email this Page  |   Subject Index  |   Search
The Office of Electronic Information, Bureau of Public Affairs, manages this site as a portal for information from the U.S. State Department. External links to other Internet sites should not be construed as an endorsement of the views or privacy policies contained therein.
About state.gov  |   Privacy Notice  |   FOIA  |   Copyright Information  |   Other U.S. Government Information

Published by the U.S. Department of State Website at http://www.state.gov maintained by the Bureau of Public Affairs.