During the sixth Meeting of States Parties to the Convention on Cluster Munitions (5 to 7 September 2016), states adopted a political declarationproposed by the Dutch presidency condemning all use of cluster munitions.
Recently, the Russian/Syrian joint military operation has extensively used cluster munitions in Syria. During 2015 and 2016, the coalition led by Saudi Arabia has also used cluster munitions in Yemen. The continued use of cluster munitions shows why it is so important that States Parties to the Convention on Cluster Munitions strengthen the stigma on these inhumane weapons by condemning all cases of use, by any party.
Ending investments in cluster munitions
In the declaration, States also recommit to the Dubrovnik Action Plan they adopted during the 2015 Review Conference. The Dubrovnik Action Plan includes a recommendation to States Parties to adopt national legislation prohibiting investments in cluster munitions. During the plenary session, several states as well as the International Committee for the Red Cross made statements about their position regarding investments in cluster munitions or cluster munitions producers. Luxembourg and the Netherlands stated their hope that other states will follow their example and install legislation prohibiting investments in cluster munitions. Spain and Belgiumalso mentioned their national legislation prohibiting investments in cluster munitions.
Side event Stop Explosive Investments Campaign
The Cluster Munition Coalition and PAX hosted a side event about the Stop Explosive Investments campaign and the 2016 update of the report ‘Worldwide Investments in Cluster Munitions; a shared responsibility’. Only a week earlier, US company Textron announced it will stop the production of its Sensor-Fuzed weapon in 2017 – which was welcomed and applauded by the panelist and the audience.
Megan Burke, Director if the Cluster Munition Coalition spoke about global efforts to end investment in cluster munitions within the Stop Explosive Investments campaign. Suzanne Oosterwijk (PAX) presented the findings of the latest update of the report Worldwide Investments in Cluster Munitions, that was launched in June. Erin Hunt (Mines Action Canada) spoke about the Canadian campaign. Finally, Maarten Broekhof from the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs explained how the Dutch ban on direct investments in cluster munitions helps to implement to Convention on Cluster Munitions by prohibiting financial investments in producers of cluster munitions.
More pictures of the side-event and the sixth Meeting of States Parties are available here.
United Nations General Assembly
States will soon have another opportunity to speak out on urgent disarmament matters, such as the Convention on Cluster Munitions. The 2016 session of the UN General Assembly First Committee on Disarmament and International Security will meet from 3 October–2 November 2016 in New York. The CMC and PAX will be in New York to make sure that states vote in favor of the resolution on the cluster munition-free world and accede to the CCM without delay.