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17 Unexploded and Abandoned Weapons

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: 29 January 2023

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

The traditional view that at the close of hostilities each party had clearance responsibility in relation to its own territory is noted in Chapter 17. The widespread nature of the explosive remnants of war problem and the very numerous and serious casualties occasioned by explosive remnants long after the military purpose in using the relevant weapons has passed are noted as important motives for the negotiation and subsequent adoption of the treaty. So it was that these factors, caused in part by frequent failures of sub-munitions to explode as intended, gave rise to the adoption of Protocol V to the CCW. The chapter discusses in logical sequence the relevant definitions associated with explosive remnants of war, the clearance, removal, and destruction obligations imposed by the treaty, the recording duties of States party and how the legal duties in the treaty interrelate with the voluntary best practice guidance given in the annex to the treaty. Of particular interest are the provisions aimed at protecting humanitarian missions and the particular arrangements associated with previously existing explosive remnants.

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