The Mine Action Support Group (MASG)
The Mine Action Support Group (MASG), or Groupe de Soutien à l’Action contre les Mines (GSAM), established in 1998, endeavors to coordinate the humanitarian mine action programs of the world's major donor states, harmonize the prioritization of their respective mine action programs, and increase donor support for mine action where it is most needed.
Currently, 27 donors comprise the MASG. They are: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, European Commission, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States of America.
The MASG normally meets in New York City and Geneva, Switzerland. These venues enable the ready participation of the United Nations, in particular the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS), United Nations Development Program (UNDP), and UNICEF, and of mine action experts from host nation capitols and the Conference on Disarmament. Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and the United States (2006, 2007) have previously chaired the MASG. Beginning in 2008, the chairs of the MASG will be assumed by different member states on a rotating basis every three months.
MASG meetings adhere to the Chatham House Rule whereby participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s), nor that of any other participant, may be revealed; nor may it be mentioned that the information was received at a meeting of the MASG, without the express consent of the participants(s) or speaker(s). The Chatham House Rule encourages frank and open discussion among meeting participants. However, participants are welcome to submit presentations and reports in electronic format that they have specifically designated to be shared with the public and made transparent to all other donors. In these cases, the Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement (www.state.gov/t/pm/wra) , which serves as the United States’ focal point for MASG activities, will post such documents on this website in the MASG Newsletter, Reports, and Other Releases section.