The Heads of States/Government of ASEAN Member States adopted the establishment of the ASEAN Regional Mine Action Center (ARMAC) during the 21st ASEAN Summit, held on 18 November 2012 in Cambodia. Under the ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC) Blueprint, the establishment of ARMAC aims to contribute to a cohesive, peaceful, stable and resilient region by focusing on the safety, socio-economic factors and humanitarian aspects of landmines and explosive remnants of war (ERW).
ARMAC’s Terms of Reference (ToR) were adopted during the 22nd ASEAN Summit, held in June 2013 in Brunei. As stated in the ToR, ARMAC is an entity associated with ASEAN under Article 16 of the ASEAN Charter. Cambodia was selected as the Host Country of ARMAC. ARMAC’s mandate and functions from the ToR are as follows:
- Enhance awareness programs on the dangers of ERW among affected communities;
- Facilitate appropriate medical and rehabilitation assistance for victims of ERW, upon request from the affected ASEAN Member States; and
- Assist interested ASEAN Member States in research and knowledge sharing on the effects of ERW and efforts to address them, including through writing proposals for technical assistance projects and funding, at their specific and individual request.
Following the adoption ARMAC’s ToR, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MFAIC) in Cambodia provided a building for ARMAC’s Headquarters in Phnom Penh.
The renovation of ARMAC’s Headquarters and the supply of office equipment was funded by the People Republic of China, which contributed to the operationalisation of ARMAC in the ASEAN region.
The Inauguration of ARMAC Headquarters was held on 25 May 2016. In addition to this, the 1st Steering Committee Meeting was conducted to discuss further establishment and the operationalisation of ARMAC.
The Executive Director and key personnel of ARMAC’s Permanent Secretariat assumed their positions.
ARMAC held its inaugural Regional Workshop in Siem Reap, Cambodia, which aimed to enhance mine action knowledge and promote future platforms for mine action knowledge sharing for ASEAN Member States.