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Table of Contents
Country Reports
Croatia, Landmine Monitor Report 2003

Croatia

Key developments since May 2002: Destruction of Croatia’s stockpile of 199,003 antipersonnel mines was completed in October 2002. In 2002, Croatia returned 60.4 square kilometers of land to the community through clearance and survey. Croatia reports mine action expenditures of KN342 million (US$44 million) in 2002, nearly 50 percent more than in 2001. In May 2003, Croatia expressed its intention to be mine-free by March 2009. In 2002, the CROMAC database recorded 29 new casualties. Croatia served as co-chair of the Standing Committee on Stockpile Destruction until September 2002, and has served as co-rapporteur of the Standing Committee on Victim Assistance since that time. Croatia became a party to CCW Amended Protocol II on 25 October 2002.

Mine Ban Policy

The Republic of Croatia signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 4 December 1997 and ratified it on 20 May 1998, becoming a State Party on 1 March 1999. In September 2001, national legislation to criminalize violations of the treaty and establish a body to monitor implementation of the Mine Ban Treaty was reported to be in “final preparations.” In May 2002, the Ministry of Defense said that the new law would be put before parliament in the second half of 2002.[1] In March 2003, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs reported that the new legislation was being examined by relevant ministries with the expectation that it would be put before parliament in late 2003.[2]

The ministries of defense and foreign affairs have both stated that penal sanctions for violations of the Mine Ban Treaty already exist in Croatian law.[3] Croatia has reported that according to Article 140 of the Croatian Constitution, “ratified international agreements and treaties are included in the national legislative system.... Their legal power supercedes other national laws.... Article 163 of the Criminal Law...defines legal sanctions (penalties) for violations of provisions of international law including ratified conventions and treaties. More specifically, violation means the use, development, production, acquirement, stockpiling, brokering, retaining, assisting, transfer, encouragement or inducing trade in...weapons or means of warfare prohibited by instruments of international law to which Croatia is a Party (which in this case includes the Ottawa Convention on Anti-Personnel Mines).”[4]

During 2002, there were 15 cases of the criminal use of explosive devices, including antipersonnel mines, reported in Croatia. The Ministry of the Interior could provide no additional information on the cases involving mines.[5]

Croatia attended the Fourth Meeting of States Parties in September 2002. The Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs said that the Mine Ban Treaty “has opened a forum for discussion among states, forced us to make legally binding actions to destroy all anti-personnel mines, as well as given us a place to exchange information, expertise and, in some cases, provide much needed assistance.”[6] He referred to the informal contact group set up by Australia and Croatia, as co-chairs of the Standing Committee on Stockpile Destruction in 2001-2002, to assist States to meet their Article 4 obligations. At the meeting, Croatia ceased to be co-chair of the Standing Committee on Stockpile Destruction, and became co-rapporteur of the Standing Committee on Victim Assistance and Socio-Economic Reintegration.

Croatia participated in the Standing Committee meetings in February and May 2003, where its delegation presented detailed information on stockpile destruction, mine clearance, mine action funding and victim assistance.

The annual Article 7 report for calendar year 2002 was submitted on 30 April 2003. Four previous Article 7 reports have been submitted.[7] In November 2002, Croatia voted in favor of UN General Assembly Resolution 57/74, which calls for universalization and implementation of the Mine Ban Treaty.

Croatia is a State Party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons and became a party to Amended Protocol II on 25 October 2002. It submitted its annual report as required by Article 13 of the Protocol on 9 December 2002 and attended the Fourth Annual Conference of States Parties to the Protocol on 11 December 2002.

Croatia participates in the Stability Pact for Southeast Europe, and chaired the Pact’s Reay Group on Mine Action in 2002, which met in May in Geneva and in June in Bucharest. Victim assistance was added to the work of the Reay Group, as many members felt that this was not adequately addressed in the region.[8] In cooperation with the Reay Group, Landmine Monitor conducted a victim assistance needs assessment.

According to the April 2003 Article 7 report, Croatia “did not produce any anti-personnel mines.”[9] The Amended Protocol II Article 13 report states that Croatia “did not and has not produced anti-personnel mines before and since January 1, 1997.”[10]

Joint military operations and “assist”

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that Croatian soldiers are not allowed to use or assist in the use of antipersonnel mines within Croatia or in other countries, including those not party to the Mine Ban Treaty.[11] The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has previously stated that, consistent with the Mine Ban Treaty, the transit of antipersonnel mines across Croatian territory by other States will not be tolerated.[12]

Antivehicle mines with sensitive fuzes and antihandling devices

At the Standing Committee meetings in May 2003, Croatia stated that it does not possess “antivehicle mines with antihandling devices that can be accidentally activated by human touch.... Anti-vehicle mines used by Croatian Armed Forces have thresholds of more than 120 kilograms—generally between 150 and 300 kilograms—negating the possibility of being accidentally activated by a person. Croatia’s Armed Forces though do still have anti-vehicle mines equipped with tilt-rods,” the TMRP-6. These mines “have a threshold of 1.3-1.7 kilograms. As it is certainly possible that TMRP-6 mines when equipped with tilt-rods could be activated by a person, Croatia is prepared to discuss this issue within the framework of Article 2 discussions of the Convention.”[13]

Stockpiling and Destruction

Destruction of Croatia’s stockpile of 199,003 antipersonnel mines was completed on 23 October 2002, well in advance of the four-year deadline for Croatia of 1 March 2003. The stockpile destruction program was carried out at the Oštarski Dolovi military area near Slunj and the Crvena Zemlja military area near Knin.

In total 199,003 antipersonnel mines of six types were destroyed in three phases. This included: PMA-1 (14,280); PMA-2 (44,876); PMA-3 (59,701); PMR-2A/2AS (74,040); PMR-3 (4); PROM-1 (6,102). An additional 45,579 fuzes were destroyed. The total cost of the destruction program, including some salaries, was €110,643 ($105,111).[14] The stockpile destruction program was completed without international financial support.[15]

Croatia initially declared that it would retain 17,500 antipersonnel mines for permitted purposes under Article 3 of the Mine Ban Treaty. In December 2000, the quantity to be retained was reduced to approximately 7,000. The most recent Article 7 report notes the use of 200 retained mines for the test and evaluation of demining machines during 2002, and the retention of 6,546 mines at the end of 2002: PMA-1 (906); PMA-2 (1,374); PMA-3 (1,386); PMR-2A (938); PMR3 (70); and PROM-1 (1,872).[16]

Although destruction of the existing stockpile has been completed, the Ministry of Defense said in January 2003 that the collection of more mines could be expected.[17] Slavko Kopjar, Coordinator of the “Farewell to Arms” campaign, said that despite positive results from the campaign which ended on 31 December 2002, many munitions, including mines, are still in individual possession.[18] In its Article 7 report for 2002, Croatia reported 16,507 mines had been collected from members of the population under the Farewell to Arms campaign.[19]

Croatia also possesses 19,076 MRUD (Claymore-type) mines, which it does not classify as an antipersonnel mine. These mines cannot be activated by pressure or accidental contact and “do not come equipped with trip-wires or mechanical fuzes as part of their assembly.”[20]

Landmine Problem[21]

At the Fourth Meeting of States Parties, Croatia stated that out of 1,700 square kilometers suspected to be contaminated with mines and unexploded ordnance (UXO), 270 square kilometers are known “with a fair degree of certainty” to be mined. These mined areas are mainly along the lines of demarcation of the 1991-1995 conflict. Determining how much of the suspected area was actually mined is difficult because “many of the mined areas were not recorded by the various Serb military and paramilitary forces that operated in our territory.”[22]

At the end of 2002, the area known or suspected to be mine/UXO-contaminated was 1,630 square kilometers, containing approximately 700,000 mines, located in 14 of the 21 counties of Croatia.[23] Estimates of the contaminated area have reduced each year, from 4,500 square kilometers in 2000.

Mine Action Planning, Coordination, and Prioritization[24]

Under Article 5 of the Mine Ban Treaty, Croatia has until 1 March 2009 to complete the destruction of all antipersonnel mines in mined areas under its jurisdiction or control. A National Mine Action Program announced in late 2000 was based on the then-estimate of 4,000 square kilometers of mine/UXO contaminated area, with the aim of making Croatia mine-free by 2010.[25] This program was reported to be under revision in 2002, and an “operational plan” for 2002-2006 was being prepared.[26] The April 2003 Article 7 report refers to the National Demining Program which has “the aim of making Croatia mine-free by its March 2009 deadline pursuant to Article 5 of the Convention.”[27] The aim of a mine-free Croatia by March 2009 was also stated by the Croatian delegation at the Standing Committee meetings in May 2003.

Also in May 2003, the capacities of the Croatian Mine Action Center (CROMAC) were presented. In 2002, Croatia had 39 demining companies, up from 23 in 2001, and the number increased to 42 companies in 2003. There were 567 deminers, 72 mine detection dogs and 39 mine clearance machines as of May 2003. The average cost of clearance had fallen to €1.53 ($1.45) per square meter, compared to €1.77 in 2001, and €2.6 in 1998.[28]

The amount of land returned to the community by clearance or survey has increased each year, as shown in the table.[29]

Year
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
Area returned to community
(sq. km., or millions sq. m.)
14.3
23.61
32.98
42.35
60.39

CROMAC’s mine action plan for 2003 was accepted by the government on 6 March 2003. The plan calls for a major increase in land return to communities in 2003. The target of 110,557,700 square meters includes 81,710,000 square meters released as non-affected after survey, 28,847,700 square meters released through demining.[30] The majority of land to be released is agricultural (41 percent), infrastructure (24 percent), and forest (16 percent).[31]

A new area of demining activity for CROMAC in 2003 is the heavily mined Prevlaka peninsula, between Croatia and Montenegro. On 15 December 2002, the Prevlaka peninsula was put under temporary Croatian legal jurisdiction and preparations made for demining jointly with Montenegrin personnel, following survey activities in 2002. The European Commission (EC) allocated €2.85 million ($2.71 million) from its 2002 budget for demining of this border area.[32]

Mine Action Funding and Assistance

CROMAC reports that in 2002 it spent KN342,281,452 (US$44.2 million)[33] on mine clearance activities, a 48 percent increase from 2001 (KN230,394,318, or $29.8 million), which in turn was a large increase from the previous year. Of the total, KN187,948,252 ($24,282,720) came from the Croatian State budget, KN73,240,946 ($9,462,655) from public companies and KN81,092,254 ($10,477,035) from foreign and domestic donations.[34]

According to CROMAC, foreign donations included KN64,362,010 ($8,315,505) from the Slovenian International Trust Fund for Demining and Mine Victims Assistance (ITF), with contributions from the EC, the US, Adopt-a-Minefield, Roots of Peace, and domestic sources. In addition, KN1,249,797 ($161,472) was received from the UNDP, KN737,315 ($95,273) from Luxembourg, KN505,940 ($65,366) from Switzerland, KN297,730 ($38,466) from the UN Office of Project Services, and KN85,000 ($10,982) from the Recobot Trust Fund.[35]

The figures provided by CROMAC, however, do not appear to tally with those provided by foreign donors. According to the UN Mine Action Investments database, and donor reporting to Landmine Monitor, contributions to mine action in Croatia in 2002 included: Canada ($205,243), European Commission ($1.9 million); France ($70,330), Germany ($800,000), Luxembourg ($190,000); Norway ($2 million); Slovenia ($64,591), and Switzerland ($230,000).[36] These total about $5.5 million.

The ITF reports that it provided funding of $10,293,794 (41 percent of its funds) to Croatia for mine action in 2002. This was almost double the funding it provided in 2001. Out of the total, $10,167,523 was expended on 83 projects in which 6.35 million square meters were demined by local commercial companies and the NGO, Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA). The balance of ITF funding allocated to Croatia was used for mine victim assistance and other projects.[37]

For 2003, CROMAC has budgeted for expenditures totaling €28,847,700, which includes funding by the State (€22 million), ITF (€5 million), and the EC (€2.6 million).[38] UNDP budgeted $230,000 for the period July 2002-August 2003 as “post-exit support to the Croatian Mine Action Center.”[39]

On 3 June 2003, a French delegation including representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the National Commission for the Elimination of Antipersonnel Mines, and Handicap International (HI) visited CROMAC and several of its current work-sites. The delegation agreed to provide €100,000 ($95,000) to demine 43,000 square meters of land in Trpinje municipality.[40] A Japanese delegation visited in February 2003 and pledged to donate €73,585 ($69,906) for the purchase of demining protective equipment.[41]

Mine Clearance, Survey and Marking

In 2002, it was planned to release to communities 69.2 million square meters of land, and mark 230 kilometers of mined and mine-suspected areas.[42] By the end of the year, an area totaling 60,398,133 square meters had been handed over to communities for use. This represents 87 percent of plan. The shortfall is attributed to financial factors, mainly lack of donor funds.[43] However, the total compares very favorably to 42.3 million square meters returned in 2001.

The total returned to communities consisted of 29,384,133 square meters of suspected areas surveyed and found not to be mine/UXO-contaminated, and 31,014,641 square meters cleared through demining operations.[44]

Demining was carried out by 24 commercial companies and one NGO, with a total of 664 deminers (550 domestic and 114 foreign), 38 machines, and 65 dogs. Commercial demining companies were responsible for clearing most of the land: 30,460,828 square meters. Army units cleared 67,359 square meters, and NPA cleared 450,000 square meters. In the process, 4,172 antipersonnel mines, 3,700 antivehicle mines, and 94,962 items of UXO were found, which represent large increases on the previous year.[45]

CROMAC reports that the types of land cleared were predominantly for infrastructure renewal (37 percent, substantially in excess of the planned area), for road renewal and a new highway (23 percent), for land prioritized for “return of population” (35 percent, nearly double the planned area), and economic/agricultural areas (21 percent). The proportions of land-type actually cleared varied from plan mainly due to a government decision to hasten construction of the new Zagreb-Split highway, and donors directing funds to reconstruction in eastern Croatia and economic reconstruction projects. Types of land use where survey/clearance fell below plan were general infrastructure and telecommunications.[46]

Two areas surveyed by Croatian teams in 2002 were the heavily-mined border between Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia (including Serbian territory in the area of Jamena), and the Croatia/Montenegro border on the Prevlaka peninsula.[47]

Out of planned marking of 230 kilometers of mine-suspected areas, 192 kilometers were actually marked. CROMAC reported that “constant marking of already marked areas caused certain difficulties.”[48]

Norwegian People’s Aid[49]

In 2002, NPA carried out general survey on 3.7 square kilometers of mine-suspected land, technical survey on 500,000 square meters, and mine clearance on 450,000 square meters of land.

NPA is the only NGO accredited by CROMAC to conduct mine clearance in Croatia, and the only organization outside CROMAC accredited to conduct general and technical survey. CROMAC’s approach is to invite tenders for demining tasks, which has resulted in commercial companies being the major implementers of mine clearance in the country. NPA focuses on tasks that have great impact on the local population, but are undesirable to take on for commercial companies, typically complex tasks with little prospects for profit.

NPA started its mine action program in Croatia in late 2001, after closing down its Kosovo program. All equipment was transferred from Kosovo, and mine clearance began in Croatia in December 2001 with a program envisaged to run for three to five years. NPA employs 42 national staff, and one international program manager who will be replaced by a Croatian during 2003. Assets include one team conducting general survey, impact assessment, community liaison and mine risk education; two technical survey teams; two manual mine clearance teams; two mechanical teams (one Mine-Cat flail and one MV-4 flail) and one mine detecting dog team.  The main donor is Norway’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Additional donors are the US State Department, International Trust Fund, Canadian International Development Agency and UN Development Program.

The NPA mine action program operates in Zadar and Sibenik counties, and in Eastern Slavonia. It cooperates with an NPA community reconstruction program in Zadar and Sibenik, aimed at rehabilitating housing and community buildings for returnees and vulnerable persons.

Within its agreements with CROMAC and the county authorities, NPA conducts its own impact assessment of each potential task before technical survey or mine clearance. This involves identifying planned post-clearance land use and beneficiaries, and availability of resources to use the land as planned.  This information assists with the prioritization of NPA’s mine action tasks and links with other humanitarian and development activities in order to improve socio-economic conditions of the target beneficiaries. The same teams carry out general survey, impact assessment, community liaison, and mine risk education. Community liaison and mine risk education is integrated with survey and clearance operations, and is carried out before, during and after the clearance tasks. Public education and victim assistance activities are organized on a periodical basis in support of the core clearance activities.

Research and Development (R&D)

In 2002, CROMAC established the Test and Evaluation Center, and interested states were invited to use its services.[50] CROMAC continued testing of demining machines, and took on the task of establishing standards for testing of demining machines and techniques, in cooperation with the Swedish Explosive Ordnance Disposal and Demining Centre and the Geneva International Center for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD).[51]

For accreditation, nine machines and 86 dogs were tested by CROMAC in 2002. All mine detection dogs in Croatia carry CROMAC microchips and have a license.[52]

R&D projects reported in last year’s Landmine Monitor Report continued in 2002. The ARC and SMART projects are due to end in 2003.[53]

At the University of Zagreb, the Center for Transfer of Technologies has been established to provide open studies on humanitarian demining.[54]

Mine Risk Education[55]

CROMAC considers living in mine-suspected areas at risk, especially farmers, hunters, fishermen, employees of public companies, older people and children.[56] It points out that mine clearance “is a long process. The population living in mine contaminated areas must learn how to safely live in the vicinity of mines. Therefore mine awareness programs must be implemented parallel with demining activities.”[57] Mine Risk Education (MRE) activities conducted in 2002 were directed mainly to primary-school age children, with other campaigns reaching the general public and some directed to farmers.

Croatia reports that in 2002 education on landmine hazards was conducted through lectures, local projects, and plays attended by 68,080 people, including 28,142 children. MRE was conducted by the Croatian Red Cross, the Ministry of Education and Sport in cooperation with the Ministry of Internal Affairs, and the Association of Homeland War Civilian Victims in cooperation with the Ministry of War Veterans Affairs and CROMAC.[58]

CROMAC’s plan for 2002 included the continuation of its MRE activities. It coordinated the “April – month of mine protection” project with local communities and the Croatian Red Cross, and the “Ne, ne mi-ne” theater play in cooperation with the Daska theater group, Recobot foundation, Croatian Red Cross and the Ministry of Education and Sport.5[59]

The “April – month of mine protection” project included a session in its three branches aimed at farmers, one of the most endangered groups. Some 150 people attended. The “Ne, ne mi-ne” play, performed in primary schools, started in September 2002 and up to February 2003 there were 28 performances to 5,530 children and 660 adults. At the same time, Recobot collected old paper to help finance mine clearance operations.

TV and radio spots were also used throughout the year, most often after the main news, during agricultural themes and in children's programs. The most intensive broadcast was in April during the CROMAC “April – month of mine protection” campaign. NPA in cooperation with the Croatian Association of Mine Victims, conducted the “Bembo and friends” campaign, based on the children's TV show “Dizalica, to warn children in Zadar, Sibenik and Vukovarsko-srijemske counties where NPA was carrying out mine clearance.

The Croatian Red Cross continued its program of presentations, exhibitions, and local projects: 1,635 presentations were conducted in all 14 mine-affected counties to 39,184 participants (13,571 men, 6,501 women, 19,112 children) in 2002.[60]

The Union of Associations of Homeland War Civilian Victims held six sessions entitled “Children in Mine Environment” for children of primary school age in the six most endangered counties, with 3,500 children attending.

Canada funded MRE in 2001-2002, including an evaluation in January 2002 which was carried out with NPA and the GICHD. On the basis of this evaluation, CROMAC devised its “Ne, ne mi-ne” theatre play.

CROMAC and the Croatian Red Cross held a meeting in November 2002 to plan the future cooperation between the two organizations on MRE activities. A CROMAC representative participated in testing a manual for MRE by the ICRC.

In October 2002, Mine, a newly established association, started to plan MRE activities. In November 2002, the Brodski list newspaper in cooperation with CROMAC organized the campaign “Without fires during holidays and Croatia without mines.”

Landmine Casualties

In 2002, the CROMAC database recorded 23 landmine and UXO incidents, causing 29 new casualties, of which six people were killed and 23 injured, including ten children, two women, and 17 men. Activities at the time of the incident included land cultivation, firewood collection, gardening, and playing. Most incidents were registered in Zadarskoj and Osječko-baranjskoj counties (five incidents per county). Included in the total number of casualties were four deminers injured during mine clearance operations.[61] In 2001, 30 mine/UXO casualties were recorded, of which eight people were killed and 22 injured. [62]

As of the end of December 2002, the CROMAC database included details on 1,848 mine/UXO casualties since 1991; with at least 554 casualties occurring since the end of the war in 1995. Of the total casualties, 414 people were killed, 1,367 injured, six suffered no physical injuries, and the status of 61 casualties is unknown. [63]

In May 2002, the Croatian Mine Victims Association (CMVA), in collaboration with CROMAC, began a survey of mine casualties in Croatia. The survey is based on a questionnaire covering the health situation, education, occupation, income and general situation of mine survivors, or the family of those killed. The survey data is being collected by mine survivors and is expected to be a useful tool for setting priorities for mine survivor assistance projects. To January 2003, 400 adult mine casualties and 140 children and teenagers have been surveyed; 50 people refused to take part in the survey. Data collection continues in 2003. The project is supported by the Canadian government (through CIDA).

Survivor Assistance

Croatia has a well-developed public health infrastructure including clinics, clinical hospitals, specialized hospitals, and rehabilitation centers.[64] First aid is reportedly always available to mine casualties in a short period of time, with transport to well-equipped hospitals provided by ambulances.[65] However, it is believed by some mine survivors that the rehabilitation currently available in Croatia is insufficient and often incomplete.[66]

Four hospitals in Croatia have facilities for the fitting of prostheses, in Zagreb, Osijek, Rijeka, and Split. The facilities available are reportedly adequate to meet the needs of amputees; however, a lack of resources limits the opportunities to improve standards.[67] Mine survivors, and other amputees, with health insurance pay about ten percent of the cost of a basic prosthesis; if amputees want a better and more expensive prosthesis, they must pay the difference in cost themselves.[68] In 2002, the Croatian government provided KN180,000 ($23,255) for a project that will provide one mine survivor in every contaminated county with a better prosthesis; two mine survivors were fitted with a new prosthesis under this project, with other beneficiaries identified.[69]

The CMVA has developed a regional network in 12 of the 14 mine-contaminated counties in Croatia. In 2002, the CMVA’s activities included: an ongoing survey of mine survivors in Croatia; support of individual mine survivors; coordination of the program for rehabilitation and psychosocial support to children and adult mine survivors during the summer in Rovinj; seminars; and raising awareness of the problems faced by mine survivors. All projects are carried out in collaboration with other associations or institutions. In March and April 2002, the CMVA organized a series of seminars in five towns in Eastern Slavonia, to raise awareness of the rights and problems of mine survivors and to provide psychosocial support. Sixteen mine survivors attended the seminars. The project was financed by the Norwegian government. The CMVA, in collaboration with the ICRC, produced a picture book by Zeljko Zorica, entitled “Endangered world,” to raise funds for a scholarship for mine survivors; four young mine survivors have benefited from the project.[70] In 2002, the ITF provided $16,593 to support the activities of the CMVA in Croatia.[71]

In July 2002, 26 children and young people benefited from medical and physical rehabilitation and psychological support at the Dr. Martin Horvat Hospital for Orthopedics and Rehabilitation in Rovinj. Participants also attended various workshops on music, painting, sport, web design, and video production. Musical instruments were donated by NPA. The program is supported by the Canadian Government and local organizations. Later the facilities were also made available to adult mine survivors and their families; 70 people participated in the program.[72]

The Croatian Blind Dog and Mobility Association runs a dog training school and provides support to the blind in Croatia. The association has 156 members, of which three are mine/UXO survivors, including a thirteen-year-old boy.[73]

One of the main problems facing mine survivors in Croatia is the lack of employment opportunities for persons with disabilities, a problem exacerbated by high unemployment in the general population.[74]

In May 2002, CROMAC employed four mine survivors for the task of entering and processing data in the database; financial support is provided by the Norwegian government. CROMAC has also employed the four deminers injured in 2002 to monitor ITF-funded projects.[75]

The local NGO, NONA, primarily a women’s multimedia center focusing on the promotion of human rights, is also involved in mine survivor assistance. NONA has produced a documentary about young mine survivors which was broadcast on national television. In addition, representatives of NONA met with the President of Croatia, Stipe Mesić, to raise awareness of the problems faced by mine survivors. In 2002, NONA organized regular workshops on computer skills for blind persons, as well as workshops for video production and graphic design for other people with disabilities in Zagreb and Karlovac. As a result of the video production and graphic design workshops two young mine survivors produced an autobiographical video which was released on 26 September 2002, along with a photo exhibition. The two mine survivors now use their new skills working part-time to produce the NONA newsletter. NONA plans to expand the workshops to Sisak and Zadar.[76]

Planning is underway for the creation of the South-East European Regional Center for Psychosocial Rehabilitation in Rovinj. The center will use existing rehabilitation facilities and medical specialists from the Martin Horvat hospital and will be housed in an existing building, which requires extensive renovation, in the grounds of the hospital. The center will be available not only to child mine/UXO survivors from Croatia and the region, but also to other persons with special needs. Funds have been pledged by Canada, Norway, Japan, and the US State Department, as well as relevant Croatian ministries and the county of Istria.[77]

In September 2002, Croatia became co-rapporteur of the Standing Committee on Victim Assistance and Socio-Economic Reintegration, along with Australia. It will serve as co-chair starting September 2003.

Disability Policy and Practice

No new legislation regulating health care provisions and assistance to persons with disabilities was introduced during 2002.[78] However, on 4 October 2002, the Croatian Parliament passed a resolution accepting a new national strategy for 2002-2006 aimed at improving the quality of life of persons with disabilities, without distinction to the cause of the disability.[79]


[1] See Landmine Monitor Report 2002, p. 208.
[2] Telephone interview with Vice Skracic, Head of Section for Arms Control and Disarmament, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 26 March 2003.
[3] Ibid; telephone interview with Marina Juric-Matejcic, Legal Department, Ministry of Defense, 10 March 2003.
[4] Article 7 Report, Form A, 30 April 2003.
[5] Email from Zinka Bardic, Spokesperson, Ministry of the Interior, 9 May 2003.
[6] Statement by Mario Nobilo, Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs, Fourth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 16-20 September 2002.
[7] Article 7 Reports submitted on: 30 April 2003 (for calendar year 2002), 26 April 2002 (for calendar year 2001), 30 May 2001 (for calendar year 2000), 26 January 2001 (for the period 1 August-31 December 1999), and 3 September 1999 (for the period to 31 July 1999).
[8] Interview with Dijana Plestina, Mine Action Advisor, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 20 January 2003.
[9] Article 7 Report, Form E, 30 April 2003. For more information, see Landmine Monitor Report 2000, p. 611.
[10] CCW Amended Protocol II Article 13 Report, Form C, 9 December 2002.
[11] Telephone interview with Vice Skracic, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 26 March 2003.
[12] Interview with Sanja Bujas Juraga, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Zagreb, 23 January 2001.
[13] “Claymore-Type Mines,” intervention by Croatia, Standing Committee on the General Status and Operation of the Convention, Geneva, 16 May 2003.
[14] Exchange rate €1 = US$0.95, used throughout this report. Federal Reserve, “List of Exchange Rates (Annual),” 6 January 2003.
[15] Article 7 Report, Form F, 30 April 2003. Croatia also reported this data at the Standing Committee on Stockpile Destruction meeting on 15 May 2003.
[16] Article 7 Report, Form D, 30 April 2003.
[17] Interview with Brigadier Slavko Haluzan, President of the Commission for Demining Issues, Ministry of Defense, Zagreb, 13 January 2003; email from Brigadier Slavko Haluzan, 16 January 2003.
[18] Interview with Slavko Kopjar, Coordinator, Farewell to Arms Campaign, Ministry of Interior, Zagreb, 13 January 2003.
[19] Article 7 Report, Form F, submitted 30 April 2003 for calendar year 2002.
[20] “Claymore-Type Mines,” Standing Committee on the General Status, 16 May 2003; Landmine Monitor Report 2002, p. 211.
[21] For the origins and extent of the mine/UXO problem in Croatia, see Landmine Monitor Report 2001, pp. 657-658; Landmine Monitor Report 2002, p. 212.
[22] Statement by Mario Nobilo, Fourth Meeting of States Parties, 16-20 September 2002.
[23] Article 7 Report, Form C, 30 April 2003; “Mine Situation in Croatia,” Standing Committee on Mine Clearance, Mine Risk Education, and Mine Action Technologies,” Geneva, 14 May 2003.
[24] For details of CROMAC coordination and prioritization of mine action, see Landmine Monitor Report 2002, p. 213.
[25] CROMAC, “The National Mine Action Program in the Republic of Croatia,” November 2000. For details, see Landmine Monitor Report 2001, p. 658; Landmine Monitor Report 2002, pp. 212-213.
[26] Interview with Damir Gorseta, Head of CROMAC, Sisak, 3 April 2002.
[27] Article 7 Report, Form C, 30 April 2003. The Program supplied by the Croatian Mine Action Center to Landmine Monitor in June 2003 was still the National Mine Action Program of 2000, based on 4,500 square kilometers of mine/UXO contamination and a target completion date of 2010. Email from Oto Jungwirth, Head of CROMAC, 27 June 2003.
[28] “Mine Situation in Croatia,” Standing Committee on Mine Clearance, 14 May 2003.
[29] Ibid.
[30] “Presentation of Plan for 2003,” Public Relations, CROMAC website, 8 April 2003, accessed at www.hcr.hr on 27 June 2003.
[31] “Mine Situation in Croatia,” Standing Committee on Mine Clearance, 14 May 2003.
[32] “Humanitarian demining of Prevlaka and border belt between Croatia and Montenegro,” Mine Action News, CROMAC website; email to Sylvie Brigot, ICBL from Catherine Horeftari, European Commission, 23 May 2003.
[33] At an exchange rate of $1 = KN7.74, used throughout this report.
[34] CROMAC, “Annual Report 2002,” April 2003, pp. 8-12.
[35] Ibid.
[36] See individual Landmine Monitor country reports for the donors, and, “Multi-year Recipient Report: Croatia,” UNMAS Mine Investments database, accessed at www.mineaction.org on 27 June 2003.
[37] ITF, “Annual Report 2002,” p. 34; email from Eva Veble, Head of International Relations, ITF, 30 April 2003.
[38] “Mine Situation in Croatia,” Standing Committee on Mine Clearance, 14 May 2003.
[39] “United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Update,” Standing Committee on Mine Clearance, Mine Risk Education and Mine Action Technologies, Geneva, 14 May 2003.
[40] CROMAC, ”The visit of the French National Commission for Destruction of Antipersonnel Mines,” Mine Action News, website, www.hcr.hr.
[41] CROMAC, “Japanese donation to CROMAC,” Mine Action News, website.
[42] CROMAC, “Annual Report 2002,” April 2003, p. 3.
[43] Ibid, pp. 3-7.
[44] Article 7 Report, Form C, 30 April 2003; the same total is given in CROMAC, “Annual Report 2002,” p. 3, but with 29,553,324 square meters surveyed and 30,845,450 square meters demined.
[45] CROMAC, “Annual Report 2002,” April 2003, pp. 3 and 7.
[46] Ibid, pp. 4-5.
[47] Letter (no. 2948) from Petar Mihajlović, Director, Center for Removing Mines and Other Unexploded Ordnance, Belgrade, 13 March 2003; Mine Action Center Belgrade, “2003 Mine Action Plan for the Republic of Serbia,” p. 2.
[48] CROMAC, “Annual Report 2002,” April 2003, p. 7.
[49] Emails from NPA, 21 March, 7 April, 13 May, and 30 July 2003.
[50] Minutes of the Reay Group Working Session, Geneva, 3 February 2003, p. 2.
[51] Interview with Dijana Plestina, Mine Action Advisor, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 20 January 2003.
[52] CROMAC, “Annual Report 2002,” April 2003, p. 16.
[53] Ibid.
[54] “Council for Higher Education considers establishing college in Velika Gorica,” Jutarnji list (daily newspaper), 25 January 2003, p. 28.
[55] Unless otherwise stated, this section is based on: interview with Ljiljana Calic-Zmiric, Advisor for Mine Risk Education and Victim Assistance, CROMAC, Zagreb, 24 March 2003; report provided by Ljiljana Calic-Zmiric, 24 March 2003. For the NPA approach to mine risk education, see the previous section on Mine Clearance, Survey and Marking.
[56] “Stronger media campaign aiming at stronger mine risk education” and “Mine victims and mine victims care,” Education and Victim Assistance, CROMAC website.
[57] “Mine Awareness,” Education and Victim Assistance, CROMAC website.
[58] Article 7 Report, Form I, 30 April 2003.
[59] Ibid.
[60] Telephone interview with Vijorka Roseg, Mine Risk Education Program Manager, Croatian Red Cross, 21 March 2003.
[61] Email to Landmine Monitor (HIB) from Liljana Čalić-Žminć, Advisor for Mine Risk Education and Victim Assistance, CROMAC, 24 June 2003. In addition, three people were reported as being involved in incidents but not injured.
[62] “Mine Victim Assistance: Status Report Croatia,” presentation to the Standing Committee on Victim Assistance and Socioeconomic Reintegration, 4 February 2003; email from Liljana Čalić-Žminć, CROMAC, 24 June 2003.
[63] “Mine Victim Assistance,” Standing Committee on Victim Assistance, 4 February 2003; email from Liljana Čalić-Žminć, CROMAC, 24 June 2003.
[64] See Landmine Monitor Report 2002, p. 220.
[65] Interview (by Landmine Monitor Victim Assistance Research Coordinator) with Liljana Čalić-Žminć, CROMAC, Sisak, 21 October 2002.
[66] Interview (by Landmine Monitor VA Coordinator) with Davorin Cetin, President, CMVA, Sisak, 11 February 2003; see also Landmine Monitor Report 2002, p. 220.
[67] Interview (by Landmine Monitor VA Coordinator) with Dr Miroslav Jelić, Director, Institute for Rehabilitation and Orthopedic Devices, University Hospital Center, Zagreb, 14 February 2003.
[68] See Landmine Monitor Report 2002, p. 220.
[69] Interview with Martina Belošević, CMVA, Zagreb, 20 January 2003.
[70] Ibid.
[71] Email from Sabina Beber, ITF, 18 June 2003.
[72] Interview with Martina Belošević, CMVA, Zagreb, 20 January 2003.
[73] Interview (by Landmine Monitor VA Coordinator) with Mira Katalenić, President, Croatian Guide Dog and Mobility Association, Zagreb, 14 February 2003.
[74] Observation based on discussions with mine survivors, doctors, prosthetists, officials, and NGOs, during a visit to Croatia by Landmine Monitor Victim Assistance Research Coordinator, 10-21 February 2003.
[75] Interview with Martina Belošević, CMVA, Zagreb, 20 January 2003.
[76] Interview with Ksenija Habek, NONA, Zagreb, 17 March 2003.
[77] Interview (by Landmine Monitor VA Coordinator) with Dijana Pleština, Mine Action Adviser, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Rovinj, 18 February 2003.
[78] For information on existing policies, see Landmine Monitor Report 2000, p. 623; and Landmine Monitor Report 2001, p. 675.
[79] “National Strategy of Unique Policy for the Disabled from 2002 until 2006,” Republic of Croatia, 2002; interview with Dr. Ruźica Tadić, State Institute for the Protection of Family, Maternity and Youth, Zagreb, 15 February 2003.