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15 Cluster Munitions

From: Weapons and the Law of Armed Conflict (2nd Edition)

William H. Boothby

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 03 October 2023

Armed conflict, international — Armed conflict, non-international — International criminal law, victims — Warfare, land — Weapons control — Weapons, conventional

This chapter explains the grave humanitarian concerns that cluster munitions have aroused and traces the processes that culminated in legal action taken to address this concern. Cluster munitions are the subject of the most recent arms control treaty, the Cluster Munitions Convention (CMC) adopted in Dublin on 30 May 2008. The process that led to the adoption of this Convention and the parallel and ultimately fruitless discussions of the same topic under the auspices of the CCW provides an important case study that illustrates how modern weapons law is, in practice, made. The complex CMC definition of cluster munitions is explained, the core obligations provided for in the treaty are related and the important provisions of article 21 dealing with interoperability issues are examined.

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