Puolustusministeri Jussi Niinistön vastaus kansainvälisen jalkaväkimiinojen kieltoa ajavalle kansalaisjärjestökoalitiolle
Alla puolustusministeri Jussi Niinistön vastaus kansainvälisen jalkaväkimiinojen kieltoa ajavan kansalaisjärjestökoalition (The International Campaign to Ban Landmines) 19.3.2018 päivättyyn kirjeeseen. ICBL:n kirjeen aiheena oli Suomessa kehitteillä olevan, niin kutsutun ToC-hyppypanoksen (Take-Off Canister) saama mediajulkisuus.
International Campaign to Ban Landmines
Ref: Geneva, 19 March 2018, Re: Anti-Personnel Landmine Convention (Mine Ban Treaty)
Dear Ms. Chayer,
In response to your letter dated 19 March 2018 where you have referred to the recent media coverage in relation to the Take-Off Canister (TOC) munition in Finland, please allow me to comment as follows.
Firstly, as a State Party to the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction, Finland continues to comply fully with the Convention and its obligations. Finland destroyed its anti-personnel landmine stockpiles in August 2015, one year ahead of schedule. Finland is also a strong supporter of humanitarian mine action.
Finland respects all her international obligations, both in times of peace and war.
Finland has made a number of defense acquisitions in order to replace the anti-personnel mines banned by the Ottawa Treaty. The TOC munition has been proposed by the Finnish defence industry as one option to complement the Finnish Defence Forces land force capability. The Finnish Defence Forces have a trial programme ongoing with the industry.
Secondly, I would like to clarify the compliance of the said development project: the munition in question is not a form of a land mine, but a remotely operated and activated bounding charge. It is not designed to explode by the presence, proximity or contact of a person.
Finland will ensure compliance with the Ottawa Treaty in the development and possible future production of the TOC munition. The Ministry of Defence has required that the TOC munition must comply with international humanitarian law, including the Ottawa Mine Ban Treaty, Geneva Conventions, Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons and customary international law applicable in an armed conflict. In addition to limitations based on the Ottawa Treaty, issues relating to indiscriminate effects or superfluous injury and unnecessary suffering form a part of the legal review.
Furthermore, please be advised the Finnish Criminal Code, Chapter 11, Section 7a prohibits violating the Ottawa Treaty. Therefore, such a bounding charge will have to comply with the Ottawa Treaty under law.
More detailed questions such as preventing the possible modification, anti-handling devices and failure rate are under review as the development of the munition matures.
Progress made in the development is under review regularly and one element of such a review is to ensure the legality of the outcome of the product. Furthermore, before making the decision to acquire the munition for the Finnish Defence Forces, it must pass the evaluation required by Article 36 of Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions.
Regarding export of military equipment from Finland, please be assured that Finland uses the EU common military list that is applied in all EU countries. All export will require an export license under the Finnish law. Finland operates a responsible and stringent export licensing regime under the applicable legislation. Criteria of the EU common position defining common rules governing control of exports of military technology and equipment (2008/944/CFSP) as well as the criteria of the Arms Trade Treaty are a crucial part in the assessment of export license applications.