China

Cluster Munition Ban Policy

Last updated: 13 September 2021

Summary

Non-signatory China acknowledges the humanitarian concerns over cluster munitions but has not taken any steps to join the convention. China has participated as an observer in every meeting of the convention. Yet it has abstained from voting on key annual United Nations (UN) resolutions promoting the convention, most recently in December 2020.

China has acknowledged that it produces, exports, and stockpiles cluster munitions, but says it has never used them.

Policy

The People’s Republic of China has not acceded to the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

China has said that it “ascribes to the goal and principles” of the convention, without joining it.[1] In November 2020, China told States Parties that military and security needs of states must be taken into account when addressing the humanitarian concerns raised by cluster munitions.[2] China has repeatedly stated that it “cannot join the convention at the moment…due to our national defence needs.”[3]

China has long objected to the manner in which the convention was negotiated outside of UN auspices.[4] It often states that “the users of cluster munitions, particularly those who massively used cluster munitions on other countries’ territory” must “effectively shoulder the responsibility for their clearance.”[5]

China did not participate in the Oslo Process that produced the Convention on Cluster Munitions.[6] When the convention opened for signature in Oslo in December 2008, China issued a statement committing to work for an “early and proper solution on the humanitarian problems arising from cluster bombs.”[7]

China has participated as an observer in every meeting of the convention, most recently the first part of the Second Review Conference held virtually in November 2020.[8] China’s representatives have readily met with Cluster Munition Coalition (CMC) representatives and Monitor researchers to discuss the government’s views on cluster munitions and position on joining the convention.

In December 2020, China abstained from the vote on a key UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolution that called on states outside the Convention on Cluster Munitions to “join as soon as possible.”[9] China has never explained why it has abstained from voting on the annual UNGA resolution promoting the convention since it was first introduced in 2015.

China voted in favor of a UN Security Council (UNSC) resolution expressing concern at evidence of cluster munition use by Sudan in 2015.[10]

China is not party to the Mine Ban Treaty.

China is party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW). China previously viewed existing international humanitarian law as sufficient to deal with the harm associated with cluster munitions, but in 2008, it supported efforts to create a new CCW protocol on cluster munitions. China has not proposed any new CCW work on cluster munitions since 2011, when states failed to agree to a draft CCW protocol on cluster munitions. This has left the Convention on Cluster Munitions as the sole instrument dedicated to ending human suffering caused by these weapons.

Use

China has repeatedly stated that it has never used cluster munitions anywhere in the world.[11] In November 2020, China told States Parties that it “has never used cluster munitions in external territories.”[12] Previously, in September 2018, China told States Parties that it “never uses” cluster munitions.[13]

Production and stockpiling

China has acknowledged to the Monitor that it produces, stockpiles, and exports cluster munitions.

State-owned company China Northern Industries (NORINCO) produces a range of conventional air-dropped and ground-launched cluster munitions including bombs, artillery projectiles, and rockets, most recently the Tianlei 500. China’s state broadcaster CCTV reported the Tianlei 500 is a 500kg air-to-surface cluster munition capable of dispensing 240 submunitions at a range of 60km from the launching point.[14] The Sichuan Aerospace Industry Corporation, a subsidiary of state-owned China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASIC), produces and markets 302mm (WS-1, WS-1B, and WS-1E) and 320mm (WS-2) unguided multiple-launch surface-to-surface artillery rockets. Among the warheads available for these rockets are “armor-defeating and killing double use cluster,” “comprehensive effect cluster,” and “sensor fused cluster.”[15] In 2012, China’s Baicheng Weapon Test Center provided information on a terminal sensing sub-projectile cluster munition rocket.[16] Additionally, several of China’s ballistic missile systems are reported to have warheads that contain conventional explosive submunitions, but few details are available.[17]

Cluster munitions produced in China[18]

Type

Caliber

Carrier Name

Number

Submunition Type

Projectiles

120mm

Type W01

30

DPICM

122mm

Type-83

30

Type-81 DPICM

130mm

Type-59

35

Type-81 DPICM

152mm

Type-62

63

Type-81 DPICM

152mm

Type-66

63

Type-81 DPICM

155mm

Unknown

72

Type-81 DPICM

203mm

Unknown

100

DPICM

Bombs

 

Anti-runway

12

Unknown

Antitank

16

Unknown

BL-755 clone

340 Kg

147

189

Unknown

Unknown

Type 2

Type 2

Type 2

42

26

28

AP bomblets

AT bomblets

APAM

Rockets

107mm

122mm

122mm

273mm

302mm

320mm

Type-63

Type-81

Type-90A

WM-80

WS-1, -1B, -1E

WS-2

16

39

39

320

Type-81 DPICM

Type-90 DPICM

DPICM

DPICM

DPICM, CEM, SFW

DPICM, CEM, SFW

Note: DPICM=dual-purpose improved conventional munitions; AP=antipersonnel; AT=antitank; APAM =antipersonnel/antimateriel; CEM=combined effects munition; SFW=sensor fuzed weapon.

 

State-owned CASIC has developed the SY300 and SY400, 300mm and 400mm munitions, respectively, with dual-purpose submunitions and blast fragmentation warhead options.[19] The China Precision Machinery Import and Export Corporation promoted the SY300, SY400, and P12 systems at the IDEX 2015 fair in Abu Dhabi.[20] In 2016, China’s military TV channel reportedly broadcast footage of a CASIC DF-16B medium-range ballistic missile capable of delivering a cluster munition warhead over 800–1,000km.[21]

Transfers

There is no transparency on China’s exports and transfers of cluster munitions. In September 2019, China told States Parties that it has “a prudent and responsible attitude” regarding exports of cluster munitions, stating “We do not export military products to countries under Security Council embargoes and sanctions and do not provide weapons to non-state actors or individuals.”[22] In 2012, a government official said that China’s “strict policy on exporting weapons” applies to cluster munition transfers.[23]

Cluster munition remnants of Chinese origin have been found in Iraq, Israel, Lebanon, and Sudan:

  • Deminers in Iraq cleared unexploded Type-81 DPICM submunitions in 2003.[24] The United States (US) military’s unexploded ordnance identification guide also identifies the Chinese 250kg Type-2 dispenser as being present in Iraq.[25]
  • Hezbollah fired more than 100 Chinese Type-81 122mm rockets containing Type-90 (also called MZD-2) DPICM-type submunitions into northern Israel in July–August 2006.[26]
  • Deminers in southern Lebanon have also found MZD-2 DPICM submunitions fired from 122mm rockets.
  • A Rockeye-type cluster bomb with Chinese language external markings was documented in Yei, Sudan in 2006.

[1] Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Fifth Meeting of States Parties, San Jose, Costa Rica, 2 September 2014.

[2] Video Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Review Conference (held virtually), 25 November 2020. Translation by the UN. Geneva. China had previously praised the convention as “an important effort of the international community to advance humanitarian concerns” and welcomed the “significant progress” made especially in domestic legislation and transparency measures. Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Ninth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 2 September 2019. China made a similar statement in 2018. See, Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Eighth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 3 September 2018.

[3] Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Seventh Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 4 September 2017; statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Eighth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 3 September 2018; and statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Ninth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 2 September 2019.

[4] Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Fourth Meeting of States Parties, Lusaka, Zambia, 10 September 2013; statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Seventh Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 4 September 2017; statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions, Eighth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 3 September 2018; and statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Ninth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 2 September 2019.

[5] Video Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Review Conference (held virtually), 25 November 2020. Translation by the UN. Geneva. Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Seventh Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 4 September 2017.

[6] For details on China’s policy and practice regarding cluster munitions through early 2009, see Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Landmine Action, Banning Cluster Munitions: Government Policy and Practice (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada, May 2009), pp. 195–196.

[7] Wang Hongjiang, “Ministry: China supports int’l efforts to ban cluster bombs,” Chinese Government’s Official Web Portal, 2 December 2008.

[8] China has attended every Meeting of States Parties of the convention, the First Review Conference in 2015, and intersessional meetings in Geneva in 2011–2014.

[9]Implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions”, UNGA Resolution 75/62, 7 December 2020.

[10] United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2228 (2015), Renewing Mandate of Darfur Mission until 30 June 2016, 29 June 2015. China also voted in favor of a 2014 UNSC resolution expressing concern at the use of cluster munitions in South Sudan. UNSC Resolution 2155 (2014) on extension of the mandate of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) until 30 November 2014,” 27 May 2014.

[11] Video Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Review Conference (held virtually), 25 November 2020. Translation by the UN. Geneva. Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions First Review Conference, Dubrovnik, Croatia, 7 September 2015; statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Meeting of States Parties, Beirut, Lebanon, 13 September 2011; and statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions First Meeting of States Parties, Vientiane, Lao PDR, 10 November 2010. Notes by the CMC. At CCW meetings in Geneva in April 2010 and February 2011, China stated that it has “never used cluster munitions outside its territories.” Statement by Amb. Wang Qun, CCW Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) on Cluster Munitions, Geneva, 12 April 2010; and statement of China, CCW GGE on Cluster Munitions, Geneva, 21 February 2011. Notes by the CMC.

[12] Video Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Review Conference (held virtually), 25 November 2020. Translation by the UN. Geneva. It made a similar statement in 2019. Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Ninth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 2 September 2019.

[13] Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Eighth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 3 September 2018.

[14] CCTV-7 (China Central Television) as reported in: Kristin Huang, “Details of the Tianlei 500 were released on state broadcaster CCTV,” South China Morning Post, 17 August 2020.

[15] Sichuan Aerospace Industry Corporation, “Our Products,” undated.

[16] “Significant breakthrough made in PLA’s terminal sensing ammunition technology,” PLA Daily, 9 April 2012.

[17] Chinese ballistic missile systems reported to be capable of delivering conventional explosive submunitions among the warhead options include the DF-11, DF-15, DF-21, and M-7 (Project 8610). For details see Duncan Lennox, Jane’s Strategic Weapons Systems, Issue 46 (Surrey: Jane’s Information Group, January 2007).

[18] The primary sources for information on China’s cluster munitions are: Robert Hewson, ed., Jane’s Air-Launched Weapons, Issue 44 (Surrey: Jane’s Information Group, 2004), p. 837; and Leland S. Ness and Anthony G. Williams, eds., Jane’s Ammunition Handbook 2007–2008, 15 January 2008 (Surrey: Jane’s Information Group, 2007). This table is supplemented with information from United States (US) Defense Intelligence Agency, Department of Defense, “Improved Conventional Munitions and Selected Controlled-Fragmentation Munitions (Current and Projected) DST-1160S-020-90,” 8 June 1990, partially declassified and made available to HRW under a Freedom of Information Act request.

[19] The larger SY-400 mod version carries a 300kg payload capable of delivering a 660 cluster-bomblet warhead. The company’s short-range P-12 missile is also capable of carrying an anti-armour submunitions warhead.

[21] R.D. Fisher Jr., “PLA flaunts strategic missiles of its Rocket Force,” IHS Janes Defence Weekly, 16 February 2016. See also, J. Lin and Peter W. Singer, “New Chinese Ballistic Missile Crashes the Battlefield Party With Cluster Munitions,” Popular Science, 19 February 2016.

[22] Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Ninth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 2 September 2019. China had previously made similar statements. See, Statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions Seventh Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 4 September 2017; and statement of China, Convention on Cluster Munitions, Eighth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 3 September 2018.

[23] The officials said that the “Export of such weapons should not go against China’s relevant laws and regulations, and that without export license issued by the competent authorities [sic] is also not allowed.” Email from Lai Haiyang, Attaché, Department of Arms Control and Disarmament, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 5 March 2012.

[24] Colin King, ed., Jane’s Explosive Ordnance Disposal 2007–2008, CD-edition, 15 January 2008 (Surrey: Jane’s Information Group, 2008).

[25] US Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technical Division, “Iraq Ordnance Identification Guide, Dispenser, Cluster and Launcher-2,” undated.


Mine Ban Policy

Last updated: 15 October 2020

Policy

The People’s Republic of China has not acceded to the Mine Ban Treaty.

In December 2018, China expressed support for the purpose and objectives of the treaty and stated that it appreciates the “humanitarian spirit embodied within the convention.”[1] Previously in December 2017, China stated, “since the Ottawa Treaty has taken effect, it has contributed greatly to the humanitarian issues caused by anti-personnel mines. China admires the humanitarianism demonstrated by the Convention, and agrees with the vision and goals of the convention.”[2] At the treaty’s Third Review Conference in June 2014, China stated that “given its national conditions and national defense needs China still could not accede to the convention at this stage,” repeating a similar statement made at the Mine Ban Treaty Thirteenth Meeting of States Parties in Geneva in December 2013, and other previous meetings.[3]

China did not participate in the Ottawa Process that created the Mine Ban Treaty, but has attended all previous review conferences held in 2004, 2009, 2014 and 2019, as well as most of the treaty’s meetings of States Parties. China has also attended many intersessional meetings held in Geneva.

On 12 December 2019, China voted in favor of annual United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) Resolution 74/61, calling for the universalization and full implementation of the Mine Ban Treaty.[4] China has voted in favor of the resolution every year since 2005.

China’s policy toward the Mine Ban Treaty and other humanitarian issues is reviewed by an interministerial committee, the China National Committee of International Humanitarian Law, which meets every two years and is chaired by the vice-premier and includes the foreign ministry among others.[5]

China is not party to the Convention on Cluster Munitions. It is a party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) and its Amended Protocol II on landmines.

Production, transfer, and use

In the past, China was one of the world’s largest producers and exporters of antipersonnel mines.[6] Since 1997, antipersonnel mine production in China has been limited to mines with self-destruct and self-deactivation mechanisms, which are compliant with CCW Amended Protocol II.[7] Officials told the Monitor in 2008 that production facilities were either idle, permanently closed, or converted to manufacture other products.[8] In 2012, a Foreign Ministry official informed the Monitor that there was no ongoing large-scale production of antipersonnel mines, but a small number of new antipersonnel mines were produced for research purposes by the military.[9] In November 2016, a Defense Ministry official confirmed earlier statements that non-self-destructing mines are no longer manufactured. The official stated that some mines that were not self-destructing remained in China’s stockpile, but that these were being destroyed.[10]

In 1996, China announced a formal moratorium on the export of any mines that do not comply with CCW Amended Protocol II. In practice, China is not known to have exported any type of antipersonnel mine during that time. Recently manufactured Chinese-made, remotely-delivered Type-84 antivehicle mines were used in Libya in 2011 and in Syria in April 2014.[11]

In June 2014, Chinese representatives informed the Monitor that no new antipersonnel mines had been used in the country in the past decade and acknowledged that antipersonnel mines no longer play a prominent role in China’s defense doctrine.[12] Previously, in 2012, a Foreign Ministry official confirmed that no new minefields had been laid.[13] In 2011, a Chinese official noted that the country maintains a small number of minefields “for national defense.”[14]

Stockpiling and destruction

In June 2014, China informed the Monitor that it stockpiles five million antipersonnel mines–a huge reduction from the 110 million previously cited by the Monitor.[15] Chinese officials have often disputed that estimate, but it wasn’t until a meeting with Landmine Monitor in June 2014 that Chinese representatives clarified for the record that the stockpile consists of less than five million antipersonnel mines.[16] In a statement to the Third Review Conference, China said it has destroyed “several hundred thousand old and dysfunctional” antipersonnel mines “over the last two decades,” and said “only a very limited number of [CCW] protocol compliant [antipersonnel mines] were kept for defense purpose [sic].”[17]

China has frequently reported on the destruction of antipersonnel mines since the late 1990s, but has never provided details on the types and quantities destroyed.[18] China reported in March 2017 that it destroyed “old mines” during the previous year, but did not provide any details on how many or what type.[19] In November 2017, China stated that its military continues to destroy old antipersonnel mines.[20] China did not report any further destruction of antipersonnel mines in 2018 or 2019.

Ongoing efforts to clear minefields in China’s southwest border provinces have been reported by various media outlets.[21] These efforts have periodically resulted in injury to demining personnel.



[1] Statement of China, Mine Ban Treaty Seventeenth Meeting of States Parties, Vienna, 26 November 2018. Translation by the Monitor.

[2] Statement of China, Mine Ban Treaty Sixteenth Meeting of States Parties, Vienna, 19 December 2017. Translation by the Monitor.

[3] Statement of China, Mine Ban Treaty Third Review Conference, Maputo, 27 June 2014.

[5] Email from Lai Haiyang, Attaché, Department of Arms Control & Disarmament, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 7 September 2011.

[6] Two government-owned companies, China North Industries Corporation (NORINCO) and Chinese State Arsenals, produced at least 22 types of antipersonnel mines, including six copies of Soviet designs. See, ICBL, Landmine Monitor Report: 1999: Toward a Mine Free World (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1999), pp. 457–458.

[7] Interview with Shen Jian, Deputy Division Director, Department of Arms Control and Disarmament, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Beijing, 23 March 2006. This information has also been stated in China’s CCW Amended Protocol II Article 13 reports.

[8] See, ICBL, Landmine Monitor Report 2008: Toward a Mine-Free World (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada, October 2008), p. 817.

[9] Email from Lai Haiyang, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 5 March 2012.

[10] Landmine Monitor interview with Sun Hui, Officer, Ministry of Defense, in Santiago, Chile, 29 November 2016. Notes by the Monitor.

[11] In May 2011, Human Rights Watch (HRW) and The New York Times confirmed the use of Chinese-produced Type 84 Model A scatterable antivehicle mines by Muammar Gaddafi’s forces in Misrata, Libya. The mines had 2009 manufacture date markings. HRW also verified the use of Type 72SP antivehicle mines near Ajdabiya and al-Qawalish by Gaddafi’s forces. For more information about both Type 72SP and Type 84 Model A mines, see HRW, “Landmines in Libya: Technical Briefing Note,” updated 19 July 2011; and Mark Hiznay, “Remotely Delivered Antivehicle Mines Spotted in Syria,” Landmine and Cluster Munition Blog, 25 April 2014.

[12] Monitor interview with Ji Haojun, Deputy Director, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Col. Wu Gang, Policy Division, Ministry of Defense, in Maputo, 24 June 2014.

[13] Email from Lai Haiyang, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 5 March 2012.

[14] Ibid., 7 September 2011.

[15] The estimate is based on interviews with non-Chinese government officials involved in CCW Amended Protocol II discussions in 1995 and 1996.

[16] ICBL/Monitor interview with Ji Haojun, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Col. Wu Gang, Ministry of Defense, in Maputo, Mozambique, 24 June 2014.

[17] Statement of China, Mine Ban Treaty Third Review Conference, Maputo, 27 June 2014.

[18] Statement of China, Fifteenth Annual Conference of the High Contracting Parties to Amended Protocol II, Geneva, 13 November 2013.

[19] CCW Amended Protocol II, National Annual Report (covering calendar year 2016), Form B, No. 2, March 2017.

[20] Statement of China, CCW Amended Protocol II Nineteenth Annual Conference, 21 November 2017.


Mine Action

Last updated: 11 November 2018

Treaty status

Mine Ban Treaty

Not a party

Mine action management

National mine action management actors

None

Mine action strategic plan

None

Operators in 2017

People’s Liberation Army (PLA)

Extent of contamination as of end 2017

Landmines

Not known

Cluster munition remnants

None

Land release in 2017

Landmines

18.4km2 cleared between November 2015 and February 2017, according to Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) Amended Protocol II Article 13 transparency report
However, no clearance reported in Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 report for 2017
Mine clearance resumed in November 2017, according to media reports

Notes: ERW = explosive remnants of war.

Contamination

The extent of mine contamination remaining in the People’s Republic of China is not known.

In the 1990s, the United States (US) reported that China had emplaced mines along its borders with India, the Russian Federation, and Vietnam.[1] China’s military estimated that around two million mines of
a wide variety of types were emplaced on the Vietnam border alone.[2] China conducted clearance operations along its border with Vietnam between 1992 and 1999,[3] and between 2005 and 2009.[4]

In 2009, China said it had completed demining along the Yunnan section of its border with Vietnam and that this “represents the completion of mine clearance of mine-affected areas within China’s territory.”[5] However, casualties from landmines continued to be reported in parts of Yunnan bordering Vietnam, where some areas were still marked as mine-affected and press reports said one or two people were injured in this region every year.[6]

Moreover, in 2011, a Foreign Ministry official reported that China maintains a small number of minefields “for national defense.”[7] Two months later, at the Mine Ban Treaty Eleventh Meeting of States Parties, China said that large-scale demining activities had “on the whole eliminated the scourge of landmines in our territories.”[8] At the Maputo Review Conference in 2014, China said it had “basically eradicated landmines on its own territory.”[9] China has not reported on mine contamination along its borders with Russia and India or on operations to clear them.

Program Management

There is no formal mine action program in China. Any mine clearance is conducted by the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) as a military activity.

Land Release

Demining of the Vietnam border was conducted in three “campaigns” in Yunnan province and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. The first was in 1992–1994 and the second in 1997–1999. Press reports cited claims by the Chinese military that this second clearance operation was the largest in world military history.[10]

However, these two campaigns did not deal with minefields located in disputed areas of the border, where 500,000 mines covered an estimated 40km2. After a technical survey of mined areas, China embarked on a third clearance campaign in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and Yunnan province in 2005. China stated in 2009 that it had completed clearance of this border after clearing a total of 5.15km2.[11]

In early November 2015, however, China embarked on a further demining operation along the border with Vietnam.[12] According to media accounts, this phase of clearance on the border was set to be completed by the end of 2017, with the clearance of more than 50 minefields covering an area of more than 50km2 in six counties along the border, in areas home to over 50,000 people. It was claimed that more than 470,000 mines remained to be cleared, despite the two other clearance operations in 1992–1994 and 1997–1999.[13]

In August 2016, China reported that it had made “positive progress” in the ongoing phase of the government’s demining operations, saying it was due to finish in 2017.[14] According to a media report in December 2016, demining in the Red River autonomous prefecture in Yunnan province had been completed after eight months of operations, with soldiers having cleared 18 minefields with a size of more than 4.4km2 in the Red River section along the Vietnamese border.[15]

In its CCW Amended Protocol II Article 13 transparency report submitted in March 2017, China reported that in November 2015–February 2017, the Chinese army cleared 18.4km2 of minefields on the Yunnan border.[16] Its latest Article 13 report, submitted in March 2018, recorded no change under Form B “landmine clearance,”[17] though media accounts reported that after an 11-month hiatus, mine clearance had resumed in November 2017 in the Yunnan border area.[18] In May 2018, six hectares 0.06km2 of cleared land were handed over to the local government after the destruction of 8,200 mines and explosive remnants of war. In total 23km2 have been cleared since November 2015 with another 15km2 expected to be cleared by the end of 2018.[19]

 

 

The Monitor acknowledges the contributions of the Mine Action Review (www.mineactionreview.org), which has conducted the primary mine action research in 2018 and shared all its country-level landmine reports (from“Clearing the Mines 2018”) and country-level cluster munition reports (from “Clearing Cluster Munition Remnants 2018”) with the Monitor. The Monitor is responsible for the findings presented online and in its print publications.



[1] US Department of State, “Hidden Killers 1994,” Washington, DC, September 1998, p. 18, and Table A-1.

[2] L. Huizi and L. Yun, “Chinese soldiers nearly done with landmine sweeping on the Sino-Vietnam border,” Xinhua, 31 December 2008.

[3] Ministry of Defence, “Post-war Demining Operations in China,” December 1999, p. 11. Before the clearance operations, there were said to be more than 560 minefields covering a total area of more than 300km2.

[4] Interview with Shen Jian, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Beijing, 1 April 2008; and Huizi and Yun, “Chinese soldiers nearly done with landmine sweeping on the Sino-Vietnam border,” Xinhua, 31 December 2008.

[5] Statement of China, Mine Ban Treaty Second Review Conference, Cartagena, 4 December 2009.

[6] “Landmines continue to kill in Yunnan province,”Global Times, 16 May 2011; and Z. Jiawei, “Landmines haunt Chinese village,” China Daily, 13 January 2011.

[7] Email from Lai Haiyang, Attaché, Department of Arms Control & Disarmament, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 7 September 2011.

[8] Statement of China, Mine Ban Treaty 11th Meeting of States Parties, Phnom Penh, 29 November 2011.

[9] Statement of China, Mine Ban Treaty Third Review Conference, Maputo, 26 June 2014.

[10] Huizi and Yun, “Chinese soldiers nearly done with landmine sweeping on the Sino-Vietnam border,” Xinhua, 31 December 2008.

[11] Statement of China, Mine Ban Treaty Second Review Conference, Cartagena, 4 December 2009.

[12] P. Scally, “Huge land mine clearance underway in Wenshan, Honghe,” Gokunming, Blog post, 5 November 2015.

[13] X. Wei, “Mine clearance mission on China-Vietnam border,” China Daily, 3 November 2015; and Z. Tao, “China launches 3rd mine clearance mission along China-Vietnam border,” China Military Online, 2 December 2015.

[14] Statement of China, “Summary record of 18thAnnual Conference of High Contracting Parties to CCW Amended Protocol II,” CCW/AP.II/CONF.18/SR.1, Geneva, 30 August 2016.

[16] CCW Amended Protocol II Article 13 Report (for 2016), Form B. Unofficial translation.

[17] CCW Amended Protocol II Article 13 Report (for 2017), Form B.

[18]Land mine removal resumes on border,” China Daily, 29 November 2017.

[19]Land mine clearing effort pays off,” China Daily, 10 May 2018.


Support for Mine Action

Last updated: 19 June 2010

China provides international mine action assistance through the ministries of foreign affairs and defense. It provides support to mine-affected countries based on need, local conditions, and ensuring capacity-building and sustainability.[1] In 2008 it was reported the annual budget for mine action support was approximately CNY6 million (US$863,595).[2] Since then, China has not reported an annual financial contribution to mine action.

China however, contributes to international humanitarian demining operations by sending engineers to participate in UN peacekeeping operations in Lebanon, through the provision of demining equipment to mine-affected countries, and by training deminers through its humanitarian demining training course. According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, from 1999 to 2008 China conducted eight humanitarian demining training programs for 360 trainees from 15 countries including Afghanistan, Angola, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Burundi, Chad, Eritrea, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, and Thailand.[3] China does not report costs associated with these activities.

2009

China contributed CNY2 million ($292,796) to Colombia for mine clearance.[4]

In September 2009 China trained 38 deminers from Iraq and Afghanistan at the People’s Liberation Army University of Science and Technology in Nanjing, in Jiangsu province.[5]

January–March 2010

In January, China donated 70 mine detectors and accessories to Egypt.[6] China also sent four experts to Egypt to train local deminers.[7]

In March China provided 50 security kits for demining and 50 mine detectors worth LKR50 million ($438,197)[8] to Sri Lanka.[9]

Also in March, China sent a 106-member team to the DRC for an eight-month UN peacekeeping operation. This team was part of the 11th peace-keeping team sent by China to the DRC since 2003, and will be joined by a second team. The team, all from the Lanzhou Military Area Command, will carry out landmine detection as well as airport maintenance and medical care.[10]



[1] “Statement on Assistance in Mine Action by Chinese Delegation at the Fourth Committee of the 64th Session of the United Nations General Assembly,” 8 November 2009, www.china-un.ch.

[2] Interview with Shen Jian, Deputy Division Director, Department of Arms Control and Disarmament, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Beijing, 1 April 2008. Average exchange rate for 2008: CNY1=US$0.14393. US Federal Reserve, “List of Exchange Rates (Annual),” 2 January 2009.

[3] “China trains deminers for nearly 20 countries,” Xinhua (Nanjing), 9 November 2009, news.xinhuanet.com.

[4] “UK steps out, China steps in,” 11 June 2009, www.bloggingsbyboz.com.

[5] “China trains deminers for nearly 20 countries,” Xinhua (Nanjing), 9 November 2009, news.xinhuanet.com.

[6] Jiang Xinghua, “China-made Mine sweeping tools used in UN peacekeeping missions,” China Security Blog.com, 9 March 2010, www.chinasecurityblog.com.

[7] Ibid.

[8] Average exchange rate for March 2010: LKR1=US$0.00876. US Federal Reserve, “List of Exchange Rates (Monthly),” 3 May 2010.

[9] Government of Sri Lanka, “China helps in the de-mining task,” 2 March 2010, www.reliefweb.int.

[10] “Chinese soldiers leave for UN peace mission in DR Congo,” Xinhua (Lanzhou), news.xinhuanet.com.


Casualties and Victim Assistance

Last updated: 26 December 2016

Casualties

No new mine casualties were identified by the Monitor in the People’s Republic of China in 2015.[1] One casualty was identified in January 2016; a Chinese official was injured by a landmine on the border with Myanmar. The exact location of this incident was not reported.[2] Prior to the 2016 incident, the last recorded casualties in China were in 2011, in Malipo county in Yunnan province, when seven civilians were injured by antipersonnel mines.[3]

The cumulative number of casualties in China is not known. However, it was reported in the media in 2011 that 14,398 civilians had been disabled by explosive remnants of war (ERW), of which 1,113 were injured by landmines.[4] The actual number is certainly higher, as these figures only include injured civilians and do not include either civilians who died in landmine incidents or military casualties. Field research in 2001 identified 5,707 mine/ERW casualties, mostly in Wenshan prefecture in Yunnan province.[5] Chinese media has repeatedly cited local authorities in Yunnan province as reporting that Wenshan prefecture has had some 6,000 landmine casualties since 1979.[6]

Victim Assistance

It has been reported that there are at least 14,398 landmine/ERW survivors in China, all of whom are civilians.[7] The number of military survivors is unknown.

At the Mine Ban Treaty Third Review Conference in 2014, China reported that “In order to help landmine victims reintegrate into the society, the Chinese government has, in close cooperation with relevant civil society, provided them with assistance in terms of funding, materials, medicare, education and job-training.”[8] Government regulations entitle persons who have impairments and disabilities due to mines/ERW to financial assistance ranging from some physical rehabilitation services at no cost, to assistance in securing employment. The law calls for gradual implementation of standards to make buildings and roads accessible.[9]

The ICRC’s Beijing office provided prostheses for five mine/ERW survivors from China and North Korea in 2015. It was not reported how many beneficiaries there were from each country.[10] The Chinese Red Cross in partnership with the ICRC provided cash grants to persons with disabilities in Yunnan province to start businesses in 2015, reaching 24 persons in Malipo county and 15 persons in Hekou county.[11]

China ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) on 1 August 2008.



[1] However, due to a lack of systematically available data, it is possible that casualties occurred and were not reported.

[2]Landmine: China lodges protest with Myanmar,” China Daily Asia, 5 January 2016.

[3] Information from the Kunming Orthopedic Rehabilitation Centre of the Yunnan branch of the Red Cross Society of China; email from Thierry Meyrat, Head of Regional Delegation for East Asia, ICRC, 10 April 2012; and “Landmines continue to kill in Yunnan Province,” Global Times, 16 May 2011.

[4] Interview with Li Tao, Deputy Chair, Disabled Persons Federation of Malipo, in Global Times, 19 May 2011. These figures only include injured civilians.

[5] Interviews with the directors of Guangxi Provincial Hospital, Nanning; Jingxi County Hospital, Jingxi; Shuo Long Township Hospital, Daxin; and Yue Xu Township Hospital, Jingxi, 8–10 February 2001; and with Chinese Disabled Persons’ Federation (CDPF), Wenshan Prefecture, Yunnan, 5 February 2001.

[6]Landmines haunt Chinese border village,” China Daily, 13 January 2011; email from Nie Jing, Representative, CDPF, 11 March 2011; and Li Huizi and Li Yun, “Chinese soldiers nearly done with landmine sweeping on the Sino-Vietnam border,” Xinhua (Beijing), 31 December 2008.

[7]Landmines continue to kill in Yunnan Province,” Global Times, 16 May 2011.

[8] Statement of China, Mine Ban Treaty Third Review Conference, Maputo, Mozambique, 26 June 2014 (delivered 27 June 2014).

[9] US State Department, “Human Rights Report 2015: China,” 13 April 2016, Washington, DC.

[10] ICRC, “Annual Report 2015,” Geneva, 2016, p. 380.

[11] Ibid., p. 378; and email from Andrew Gardiner, Senior Livelihood Advisor, ICRC, 3 November 2016; Red Cross Society of China, “ICRC livelihood project documentary,” 29 July 2016.