Mine Ban Policy

Last updated: 18 December 2019


The Swiss Confederation signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 3 December 1997 and ratified it on 24 March 1998, becoming a State Party on 1 March 1999. Legislation to enforce the antipersonnel mine prohibition domestically was adopted on 13 December 1996 and subsequently amended to conform with the Mine Ban Treaty.

Switzerland was nominated as Secretary-General-Designate of the Twelfth Meeting of States Parties to be held in Geneva in December 2012. Switzerland has served as co-rapporteur and then co-chair of the Standing Committees on Stockpile Destruction (2001–2003), Victim Assistance (1999–2000 and 2004–2006), Mine Clearance (2009–2011), Article 5 Implementation (2016–2017), Enhancement of Cooperation and Assistance (2014–2016), and Cooperative Compliance (2018–2019). Switzerland also served as President of the Ninth Meeting of States Parties in 2008.

Switzerland attended the treaty’s Seventeenth Meeting of States Parties in Geneva in November 2018 and the intersessional Standing Committee meetings in Geneva in May 2019. At the Seventeenth Meeting of States Parties, Switzerland provided an update on Article 5 implementation, drawing particular attention to the use of landmines of an improvised nature, as well as the discovery of previously unknown mined areas and newly mined areas after clearance obligations have been fulfilled.[1]

Switzerland is party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons and its Amended Protocol II on landmines and Protocol V on explosive remnants of war.

Use, production, transfer, and stockpile

Switzerland formerly produced and imported antipersonnel mines but did not export any. Production ceased in 1969 and export of antipersonnel mines was banned in December 1996. Switzerland previously produced stake mines and Type 64 bounding mines at a government-controlled facility from 1967 to 1969. Switzerland also produced detonators for antipersonnel mines, for antitank mines and for sea mines. The quantities, costs, and technical characteristics of these mines are unknown.

Switzerland destroyed its stockpile of 3.85 million antipersonnel mines by 15 March 1999. It did not retain any antipersonnel mines for training or research purposes.

[1] Statement of Switzerland, Mine Ban Treaty Seventeenth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 29 November 2018.