Lao Ban Advocates brought the Lend Your Leg campaign to the Lao PDR

  • poster with the Lao Ban Advocates to join the campaign
  • the group of Lao Ban Advocates

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(Vientiane, Lao PDR, 4 April 2012) During celebrations for the International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action, organized and coordinated by the National Regulatory Authority for UXO/Mine Action Sector in Lao PDR (UXO-NRA), a group of Lao UXO survivors, called the Lao Ban Advocates, brought the Lend Your Leg campaign to the Lao PDR.

In a break during football tournament finals, organized annually by the UXO-NRA for the International Mine Awareness Day, the Lao Ban Advocates stood up, pulled up their pant legs and shirt sleeves to show in the spirit of the Lend Your Leg campaign that they condemn any use of UXO and landmines and encourage all countries to sign the Convention on Cluster Munitions and the Mine Ban Treaty. They also invited the audience to do the same and were joined, amongst others, by Phoukieo Chanthasomboun, Director of the UXO-NRA, David Horrocks, MAG Laos Country Director, Olivier Baudouin, advisor to the UXO-NRA and UNDP and Kerryn Clarke, coordinator at COPE.

The Lao Ban Advocates’ action today was preceded by Handicap International’s Country Director Anne Rouve-Khiev’s speech which emphasized the Lao PDR’s exceptional commitment in the UXO sector and invited the Lao government to continue supporting this important cause by signing the Mine Ban Treaty.

Since the launch of the international Lend Your Leg campaign by the International Campaign to Ban Landmines on 1 March 2012, the 13th anniversary of the Mine Ban Treaty becoming international law, activists, United Nations officials, politicians, celebrities, journalists and ordinary people everywhere across the globe have pledged to “lend their legs” to speak out against this indiscriminate weapon which continues to blight people’s lives.