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The Eastern Republic of Uruguay signed the Convention on Cluster Munitions in Oslo on 3 December 2008. On 18 March 2009, at a special event to promote the convention at the UN, Uruguay said that in the coming days, the President would sign the official request for Congress to begin the ratification process, and that it expects the process to be short.[1]

In February 2008, Uruguay confirmed that it has never produced, stockpiled, or used cluster munitions.[2]

Uruguay’s first engagement in the Oslo Process came in September 2007, when it attended the Latin American Regional Conference on Cluster Munitions held in Costa Rica. Uruguay subsequently participated in the international treaty preparatory conferences in Vienna and Wellington, as well as the formal treaty negotiations in Dublin in May 2008. It also attended regional conferences in Mexico and Ecuador.

Uruguay worked for a strong treaty text at the negotiations in Dublin. Uruguay supported a comprehensive ban without exceptions or exclusions for certain weapons. [3] It opposed the introduction of a transition period during which states could continue to use cluster munitions.[4] It put high priority on strengthening victim assistance provisions.[5]

Upon signing the convention in Oslo, Ambassador Julio Moreira said that the convention was one of the government’s “essential priorities” and that it is committed to continuing to work to put the convention into effect.[6]

Uruguay is party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) and ratified Protocol V on Explosive Remnants of War on 7 August 2007. At the CCW meeting in November 2008, Uruguay was one of 26 states that issued a joint statement expressing their opposition to the weak draft text on a possible CCW protocol on cluster munitions, indicating it was an unacceptable step back from the standards set by the Convention on Cluster Munitions.[7]

[1] CMC, “Report on the Special Event on the Convention on Cluster Munitions, United Nations, New York, 18 March 2009.”

[2] Wellington Conference on Cluster Munitions, 22 February 2008. Notes by CMC. Uruguay repeated this during the Dublin negotiations. Statement of Uruguay, Dublin Diplomatic Conference on Cluster Munitions, 30 May 2008. Notes by Landmine Action.

[3] On 22 May 2008, Uruguay co-sponsored a proposal by Argentina to delete proposed Article 2(c) on definitions. CMC, “Day 4 – Towards Some Text Solutions – Dublin Diplomatic Conference,” 22 May 2008, www.stopclustermunitions.org.

[4] Summary Record of the Committee of the Whole, Eighth Session: 23 May 2008, Dublin Diplomatic Conference, CCM/CW/SR/8, 18 June 2008.

[5] Proposal by Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Guinea, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Uruguay, and Zambia for the amendment of Article 5, Dublin Diplomatic Conference, CCM/70, 21 May 2008.

[6] Statement by Amb. Julio Moreira, Deputy Director General for Political Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Convention on Cluster Munitions Signing Conference, Oslo, 3 December 2008. Notes by Landmine Action.

[7] Statement delivered by Costa Rica, Fifth 2008 Session of the CCW Group of Governmental Experts on Cluster Munitions, Geneva, 5 November 2008.