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U.S. To Stop Making, Buying Antipersonnel Land Mines

The United States has announced it will no longer produce or acquire antipersonnel land mines.

The White House said in a statement issued in Maputo, Mozambique, that the United States will not replace its stockpiles of land mines after they expire.

A U.S. delegation is attending a conference in Mozambique to review the Ottawa Treaty, an international convention that bans the use, stockpiling, production, and transfer of antipersonnel land mines.

It became international law in 1999 and 161 countries have signed and ratified the treaty.

A 2008 UN report said land mines kill 15,000 to 20,000 people -- mostly women and children -- each year.

The United States, China, Pakistan, Iran, India, Russia, and six other former Soviet republics are among the 35 countries that have not signed the Ottawa Treaty.

The White House said Washington is looking at ways to accede to the Ottawa Treaty.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP