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Published:November 19th, 2006 03:36 EST
Third Review Conference on Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons

Third Review Conference on Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons

By SOP newswire

The Third Review Conference of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons, which concluded today, November 17, 2006, welcomed the entry into force of a new Protocol on Explosive Remnants of War (Protocol V). This Protocol requires each State Party to mark and clear or destroy explosive remnants of war in territories under its control after a conflict. If the state that used the weapons does not control the territory in which the explosive remnants of war are located, the user state is required to provide assistance, if feasible. States Parties also must take precautions to protect civilians in their territory from the effects of explosive remnants of war. Finally, Protocol V calls upon States Parties to improve the reliability of munitions, thereby minimizing the occurrence of explosive remnants of war.

While full implementation of this Protocol, coupled with the rigorous implementation of existing international humanitarian law, should fully protect civilians from the dangers presented by explosive remnants of war, many have expressed concern about the negative humanitarian impact associated with explosive remnants of war caused by cluster munitions. Motivated by these humanitarian concerns, the United States joined its fellow States Parties in agreeing to a meeting in the Convention's framework, focused primarily on cluster munitions, including their technical aspects and the applicable law. The United States intends to participate actively in this meeting.

In addition, the United States was pleased to join 24 other countries at this conference in declaring their intent to implement national policies that will reduce the humanitarian impact of anti-vehicle mines. However, the United States was deeply disappointed that after five years of discussion, the conference was unable to achieve consensus on the adoption of an anti-vehicle mine protocol and had to suspend work on this important subject. The November 2007 Meeting of States Parties to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons will address whether all Parties are in a position to resume work on this important issue.

Source: DoS