Definitions

Definitions of key concepts and terms are set out here.

Anti-personnel mine

Under the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention the definition of anti-personnel mine includes all mines that are activated by the presence, proximity, or contact of a person (as opposed to a vehicle), but includes anti-vehicle mines with anti-handling devices that impede their clearance. 

Cluster munition

A cluster munition comprises a container that disperses submunitions (small bombs) in the air which fall to the ground individually over an area of some 10,000 square metres (depending on the model and a range of factors). They are used to kill people or destroy vehicles (or both).

A cluster munition is defined in the Convention on Cluster Munitions as a “conventional munition that is designed to disperse or release explosive submunitions each weighing less than 20 kilograms, and includes those explosive submunitions.”Art. 2, 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions. By conventional munition is meant weapons other than biological, chemical, or nuclear. Landmines are specifically excluded from the definition of a cluster munition by the Convention.Art. 1(3), 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions. 

Cluster munition remnants

Cluster munition remnants means failed cluster munitions, abandoned cluster munitions, unexploded submunitions and unexploded bomblets.

Cluster munition remnants (CMR) are explained in Article 2 of the Convention on Cluster Munitions. The main threat comes from unexploded submunitions, which are defined as explosive submunitions"Explosive submunition” means a conventional munition that in order to perform its task is dispersed or released by a cluster munition and is designed to function by detonating an explosive charge prior to, on or after impact. Art. 2(3), Convention on Cluster Munitions. that have been dispersed or released by, or otherwise separated from, a cluster munition and have failed to explode as intended.Art. 2(5), Convention on Cluster Munitions.

“Failed cluster munition” means a cluster munition that has been fired, dropped, launched, projected or otherwise delivered and which should have dispersed or released its explosive submunitions but failed to do so.Art. 2(4), Convention on Cluster Munitions.

“Abandoned cluster munitions” means cluster munitions or explosive submunitions that have not been used and that have been left behind or dumped, and that are no longer under the control of the party that left them behind or dumped them. They may or may not have been prepared for use.Art. 2(6), Convention on Cluster Munitions.

“Unexploded bomblet” means an explosive bomblet“Explosive bomblet” means a conventional munition, weighing less than 20 kilograms, which is not self-propelled and which, in order to perform its task, is dispersed or released by a dispenser, and is designed to function by detonating an explosive charge prior to, on or after impact. Art. 2(13), Convention on Cluster Munitionsthat has been dispersed, released or otherwise separated from a dispenser and has failed to explode as intended.Art. 2(15), Convention on Cluster Munitions.

A Suspected Hazardous Area (SHA) is an area where there is reasonable suspicion of mine/ERW contamination on the basis of indirect evidence of the presence of mines/ERW. An SHA is generally a target for further survey to confirm or discredit the suspicion. 

A Confirmed Hazardous Area (CHA) is an area where the presence of mine/ERW contamination has been confirmed on the basis of direct evidence of the presence of mines/ERW.

A mined area is an area where the presence of mine contamination is confirmed and which may also contain ERW, including cluster munition remnants.

A battle area is an area where the presence of ERW contamination is confirmed but which does not contain mines.