February 20, 2006

HARRISONBURG—In a review published in the current (Winter 2006) issue of the Journal of Mine Action, Dr. J. Peter Pham, Director of the Nelson Institute for International and Public Affairs at James Madison University, reviews a recent commentary on the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban (or “Ottawa”) Convention.

According to Dr. Pham, Commentaries on Arms Control Treaties, volume 1: The Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production, and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction, by Stuart Maslen (Oxford University Press, 2005) “ offers a comprehensive article-by-article interpretation of the Mine Ban Convention, as well as a thorough overview of the Convention as a whole and the unusual fast-track negotiation—the ‘Ottawa Process’—that led to its adoption…[as well as]…a long introduction describing the development and use of anti-personnel mines, assessing their military utility and reviewing the historical and legal antecedents to the Convention.”

Dr. Pham writes, “While jurists will undoubtedly quibble at the margins with particulars about this paragraph or that parenthetical, Maslen knows his material well…Although it is neither an easy read (but not a difficult one either) nor an inexpensive book, this work deserves an honored place on the shelf of every scholar of international humanitarian law as well as that of mine-action centers worldwide.”

The text of Dr. Pham’s review can be accessed online by clicking here.