On February 28, the Frente Popular para la Liberación de Saguia el-Hamra y de Río de Oro (POLISARIO) destroyed 1,506 anti-personnel mines in stockpiles. Stockpile destruction is internationally recognized as one of the pillars of mine action, hence the importance of this date for mine action in Western Sahara.
Executive Summary and Recommendations
This report considers the broad humanitarian problems arising from the use of "explosive weapons" - weapons that cause injury, death or damage by projecting explosive blast, and often fragmentation, from the detonation of an explosive device. Explosive weapons are a subset of what are often called "conventional weapons." As a technological category, explosive weapons include artillery shells, bombs (such as aircraft bombs, car bombs, 'suicide' bombs), grenades, landmines, mortars and rockets, amongst others.
The Report of the Secretary-General on the protection of civilians in armed conflict (S/2009/277, 29 May 2009, paragraphs 35-36) welcomes progress on the elimination of anti-personnel mines and cluster munitions through the 1997 Mine Ban Treaty (MBT) and the 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) but expresses growing concern at the indiscriminate and severe humanitarian impact from explosive weapons in general, in particular when used in densely populated areas.
New report looks at government engagement on ban treaty
GENEVA, Switzerland - 29 May 2009 - Several states that have signed the new international treaty prohibiting cluster munitions have already started to destroy their stockpiles of the weapon, even before the treaty formally takes effect, according to Banning Cluster Munitions: Government Policy and Practice, a 288-page report released today.
Introduction and Overview
The period from 2006 until the end of 2008 saw dramatic changes in the positions of many governments on the military necessity and legality of cluster munitions. In a shift of international opinion, dozens of nations went from an adamant defense of the weapon to a full embrace of a comprehensive prohibition.
Initiated by the government of Norway in November 2006, the Oslo Process provided a fast-track multilateral response to the humanitarian problems posed by cluster munitions.
London 29 April, 2009) - The UK government's commitment to help developing countries contaminated by cluster munitions is about to be put to the test.
Today (Wed) over 100 countries are expected to sign the Convention on Cluster Munitions, the most significant humanitarian treaty for a decade, according to Landmine Action, Oxfam and other campaigners.
The new treaty bans cluster bombs - large weapons which release hundreds of smaller bombs - and will save lives now and in future wars.
This report aims to quantify the economic consequences of cluster munition contamination resulting from the 2006 conflict for the people of southern Lebanon and those organisations, institutions and states that provided assistance to them. The extent of cluster munition use during the 2006 conflict has been widely reported, as have the implications of that use in the context of international humanitarian law.