On December 1st, Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), along with 17 other Senators, submitted a letter to the State, Foreign Operations and Other Programs Appropriations Subcommittee leadership of the House and Senate supporting increased funding for the State Department’s Conventional Weapons Destruction (CWD) account. This account funds State Department global landmine removal and weapons security programs.

The letter calls for $290 million to be allocated to demining efforts in the fiscal year 2023 budget, which Congress is working to finalize before the end of the calendar year. The letter also calls for strong demining funding for to Ukraine, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Angola, Zimbabwe, Afghanistan, and Nagorno Karabakh.

Earlier this year, the House proposed $264 million for these programs while the Senate proposed $268 million. In Fiscal Year 2022, Congress provided $254 million for these life-saving programs.

This is the second time this year Senator Van Hollen has led a letter requesting funding for global demining programs, after a May 2022 bipartisan effort alongside Senator Todd Young (R-IN) and 42 other Senators.

HALO is grateful to all the Senators who joined this letter including: Senators Tammy Baldwin, Sherrod Brown, Bob Casey, Dianne Feinstein, Mazie Hirono, Mark Kelly, Angus King, Ed Markey, Jeff Merkley, Chris Murphy, Gary Peters, Bernie Sanders, Tina Smith, Debbie Stabenow, Mark Warner, Elizabeth Warren, Ron Wyden

Thank you to advocacy partners Mines Advisory Group (MAG), PeaceTrees Vietnam, and Legacies of War for endorsing the letter.