Mr. Speaker, I want to commend my colleague for his understanding of the far-reaching implications of this, and the fact that this is but one piece of a larger puzzle when it comes to Canada's international efforts vis-à-vis demining efforts and the use of this legislation to help implement the convention banning cluster munitions.
In his extensive travels, I know the member has on many occasions encountered representatives of nations around the world who are very grateful for Canada's efforts. Whether it be in some of the conflict zones in which Canada has been involved over the years, in Bosnia, Kosovo, and more recently, Afghanistan and Libya, we have seen the devastating effects and countries that are mined to the max, where the remnants of war have such grave implications particularly for schoolchildren.
It is something that we need to reflect on. The fact is there are many countries where the mere effort of going to school or playing in a soccer field or going out with friends to take part in the simplest of activities can result in death or grave injury because of munitions left in the ground.
Our country has in fact played a leading role over the years, internationally, in addressing this humanitarian impact of land mines. We continue to work with organizations, with other countries, to meet that standard and to play that type of leadership role on the international stage.
I mentioned some of the earlier commitments that we have made monetarily. Canada, for example, provided $16.8 million just two years ago to support victim rehabilitation, and clearance and capacity building in nine countries: Colombia, Afghanistan, Cambodia, South Sudan, Tajikistan, Libya, Jordan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Palau.
Dating further back, in 2007-08, our contribution was $51.4 million. That year we ranked third overall in our contribution.
These are just a few examples of how we remain deeply committed to this cause. We continue to elevate possible mine action projects that will deliver tangible results. Here at home, this is an opportunity for us to send a very clear signal of that commitment, by passing this legislation, by moving forward with the ratification of the convention. I would encourage all members to support that effort.