Act today, No Fear Tomorrow!! 2018 Asia Platform to Ban Landmines.

Act today, No Fear Tomorrow!! 2018 Asia Platform to Ban Landmines. 

Article by Bertille Jarry (賈貝蒂)/Photo Credit: Molly Huang (黃慕琳)

On the 2nd and the 3rd of May, Taiwan has put a step further into the anti-landmine worldwide movement. In fact, Eden Social Welfare Foundation held the very first Asian initiated Platform to Ban Landmine in National Taipei University. This event hosted ban landmine campaigners from all over the world, both organizations representatives and landmine survivors.

Mr. Hector  Guerra, International Campaign to Ban Landmine representative said in the interview that, “This is an exemplary work and we trust that this will be long lasting, will bring together the brilliant initiatives that have taken place in the different countries in this part of the world.” .This Asia Platform to Ban Landmines counted many organizations as its participants, including representatives from 11 countries and 4 landmine survivors from Uganda, Vietnam and Sri Lanka, as well as Eden Social Welfare Foundation (Taiwan), who was the initiator of the platform.

The event has stood for two purposes. First hand, to discuss together the issue of landmines across the world and consider more specifically the current situation of landmines in the region of Asia. This brainstorm, around this landmine-free world goal, has allowed them to focus on the main weakness of their movement and how to resolve these difficulties in the most efficient way. Eden Welfare Foundation, with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Taiwan, was fully engaged into this solution finding two-day reflection.Ms. Chen, Deputy Director in General of Department of NGO international affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs mentioned in the opening ceremony that,“As a mine free country, Taiwan is more than willing to assist other regions in their efforts to clear all landmines in their homelands. The Asia platform to ban landmines offers countries of our region great opportunity to lead challenges ahead.”

On a second hand, this event also allowed youth leaders to share their life experiences. During these two days, survivors from Vietnam, Uganda and Sri Lanka were given advices and keys on how to raise public awareness, promote and spread their movements in Taiwan, but also in their own countries. During their stay, these youth leaders were invited to several universities to tell their speeches in front of Taiwanese students, to let them know about their hardships, and how they overcame their disabilities; but also explain their daily struggle for landmines clearance.  Mr. Moser, Coordinator of Landmine and Cluster Munitions monitor also stated in the opening, “  The International Campaign to Ban Landmines has been grateful to the Eden Social Welfare Foundation and Government of Taiwan to the support they have given to our campaign for many years and how actively Eden has participate in the campaign.”

As the first world scale initiative from an Asian country to a worldwide, this two-day platform can be considered successful. Eden Social Welfare Foundation piled up another break on this anti-landmines safety wall. Hopefully, this event is only the beginning of a larger Asian antipersonnel landmines action.