Practice Relating to Rule 81. Restrictions on the Use of Landmines
The Russian Federation’s Regulations on the Application of IHL (2001) states:
138. It is prohibited to use minefields against the civilian population and objects.
139. Whenever mines are laid the civilian population shall be warned in advance about the danger area (a mined area), except for cases when the situation does not permit to do so.
140. Specific requirements imposed by international humanitarian law on the use of antipersonnel mines consist in additional measures and restrictions described in Annex 6 to the present Regulations [which refers to the Protocol on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Mines, Booby Traps and Other Devices as amended on May 3, 1996 (Protocol II to the Geneva Convention of 1980)].
141. It is allowed to use without restrictions:
- command-detonated (by radio or wire) fragmentation mines capable of target selection;
- fragmentation directional mines if placed for a period of up to 72 hours;
- antipersonnel mines fitted with a delay action fuse.
142. Minefields reference (minefields location registration) shall be done in relation to the coordinates of at least two reference points.
143. Decision to mark a minefield with a fence shall be taken by the mining unit commander.
144. Minefields made up of antipersonnel mines, other than those described in Paragraph 141, shall be marked with signs (see Annex 1 to the present Regulations) visible and clear for a civilian persons approaching the minefield perimeter from such a distance that is sufficient to identify it. The minefield may be fenced with barbed wire or any other means hampering trespass. After the mines have been placed within such marked and fenced area, the minefield shall remain under protection (observation).
145. When the mine obstacles are erected in the forward edge of the battle area (line of contact) manually, with the use of portable mining sets, by mobile obstacle units or in different conditions when there is a direct threat to the personnel engaged in the fencing of the mine obstacles, it is allowed not to mark and fence the mine obstacles made up of antipersonnel high explosive, circular area fragmentation and antipersonnel cluster mines. However, when the situation changes (the above-mentioned threat vanishes), the fence shall be erected as soon as possible.
146. After the termination of combat operations, in order to ensure the protection of civilian persons against the effects of antipersonnel mines and to prevent civilians from getting into the mined areas, all minefields, mines and booby-traps shall be destroyed (removed) or left within the marked and fenced perimeter that is maintained under proper protection (observation).