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Press Releases » Press Release - Cluster Munition Monitor 2011


New global report documents impressive progress as nations embrace the ban

GENEVA, 16 November 2011—The international treaty banning cluster munitions is having a powerful impact after just one year of implementation, according to Cluster Munition Monitor 2011, a global report launched today at the UN in Geneva.

“This report shows how governments that have joined the Convention on Cluster Munitions are getting down to the business of implementing its provisions with great vigor and enthusiasm,” said Steve Goose, chair of the Cluster Munition Coalition and an editor of Cluster Munition Monitor 2011. “From stockpile destruction to clearance to new laws, we are witnessing impressive efforts as nations embrace this convention.”

Cluster Munition Monitor 2011 details progress made in implementing the Convention on Cluster Munitions, the legally-binding treaty which 111 states have now joined, agreeing to ban this deadly, indiscriminate weapon. Of states that have used produced, exported, or stockpiled cluster munitions, 38 have now joined the Convention on Cluster Munitions, thereby committing to never engage in those activities again.

  • Eleven States Parties have completed destruction of their cluster munition stockpiles (Afghanistan, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Moldova, Montenegro, Norway, Portugal, Slovenia, and Spain), and the other 13 States Parties with stockpiles have committed to destroy them by the convention’s eight-year deadline.
  • Collectively, States Parties have destroyed nearly 600,000 cluster munitions containing more than 64.5 million submunitions.
  • Two of the world’s biggest stockpilers—Germany (67 million submunitions) and the United Kingdom (39 million submunitions)—have already destroyed half of their respective stocks.
  • Five countries that have signed but not yet ratified the treaty have already completed destruction of their stockpiles (Angola, Colombia, Honduras, Hungary, and Iraq).
  • Since the treaty entered into force on 1 August 2010, an additional 28 countries have become States Parties, including Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Lebanon, which are all contaminated by cluster munition remnants. Of the 28 countries, 25 were signatories that ratified the convention and three countries —Grenada, Swaziland, and Trinidad and Tobago— acceded, a one-step process equivalent to signature and ratification to the treaty.
  • Fifteen countries have enacted national legislation to implement the convention, including the Cook Islands, Czech Republic, Ecuador, and Italy in 2011.

In addition:

  • Sixteen of the 28 countries still contaminated by cluster munitions have signed or ratified the treaty and significant clearance measures were reported in most of the affected States Parties. In 2010, at least 59,978 unexploded submunitions were destroyed during clearance operations around the world and more than 18.5km2 of cluster munition contaminated land was cleared.
  • Cluster Munition Monitor estimates that there have been at least 16,921 casualties of cluster munitions. All survivors require sustained support to recover from their injuries and contribute to their families, communities, and society as a whole.

In 2011, two states not party to the Convention on Cluster Munitions used cluster munitions: Libya (in Misrata in April) and Thailand (in Cambodia in February). Cluster munitions have been used by at least 19 governments in armed conflict in 36 countries and four disputed territories since the end of World War II.

Cluster Munition Monitor 2011 is being launched as governments meet in Geneva for the Fourth Review Conference of the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW), where some states are pursuing the negotiation of a new CCW protocol on cluster munitions. The Cluster Munition Coalition has described the draft text as weak and full of exceptions, and cautions that it could lead to an increase in the use and production of cluster munitions by those countries that have not joined the ban convention.

“All states, especially those seeking to create an alternate law on cluster munitions, should note the evidence contained in this report showing that the ban on cluster bombs is taking firm hold,” said Jacqueline Hansen, the Monitor’s Program Manager. “There is no need for a new law—this one is functioning perfectly well and we urge all states to join it and relinquish this weapon.”

The CCW talks include several nations that have used cluster munitions and that have not joined the Convention on Cluster Munitions, including Israel, Russia, and the United States.

The Monitor is coordinated by an Editorial Board comprised of five non-governmental organizations: Mines Action Canada, Action on Armed Violence, Handicap International, Human Rights Watch, and Norwegian People’s Aid. It constitutes a sustainable and systematic way for non-governmental organizations to monitor and report on the implementation of humanitarian and disarmament treaties.

The Monitor was created in June 1998 by the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, 1997 Nobel Peace Prize co-laureate, and now serves as the research arm of the ICBL and the Cluster Munition Coalition.

Cluster Munition Monitor 2011 and related documents will be available on 16 November at www.the-monitor.org/cmm/2011


For more information or to schedule an interview, contact:

  • Kate Wiggans, ICBL-CMC Media and Communications Manager, Geneva (GMT+1), Mobile +41-78-685-11-46 or +41-22-920-03-20, email kate@icblcmc.org
  • Jacqueline Hansen, Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor Program Manager, Geneva (GMT+1), Mobile +41-77-489-07-39, +1-613-851-5436, email jacqueline@icblcmc.org

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