13 August 2008

Never again: 2 years since the cluster bombing of Lebanon

13 August 2008 marks two years since the cluster bombing of southern Lebanon. Remember Lebanon and call on your government to take action.Just over two months ago more than 100 governments across the world negotiated a treaty to ban cluster bombs, clear contaminated land and provide assistance to survivors. The world's governments must now honour the victims of cluster bombs and sign the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) to prevent cluster bombs being used again and avoid future tragedies."I lost my five-year-old son to an unexploded cluster bomb on an ordinary day in the park. He was one of many children killed by cluster bombs every year" says Raed Mokaled."I say to governments, think of these children as your children. Sign the treaty before more innocent lives are lost".Cluster munitions were used intensively by Israeli forces in Lebanon, which resulted in more than 200 civilian casualties. Many more people have been affected by the use of cluster bombs causing extensive damage to Lebanon's agriculture, infrastructure and economy.Large numbers of the cluster munitions failed to explode and have contaminated large areas of agricultural land as well as populated areas leading to deaths and injuries after the conflict and hampering reconstruction and development efforts.Take Action: Remember LebanonRemember the cluster bomb victims in Lebanon and in more than 30 countries and territories across the world and call on governments to sign the Convention on Cluster Munitions to ban cluster bombs and help affected communities prevent future tragedies caused by cluster bombs.

  • Hold a candlelight vigil to remember the victims of cluster bombs in Lebanon, and elsewhere across the world, and call on your government to make sure cluster bombs are never used again by signing the Convention in Oslo this December.
  • Learn about the cluster bombing of Lebanon. Read the Human Rights Watch report Flooding South Lebanon and Landmine Action report Counting the Cost.
  • Issue a press release: highlight the devastation caused in Lebanon from the use of cluster bombs in 2006, inform the media about the negotiation of the treaty in Dublin and the strong victim assistance obligations it contains, and call on your government to demonstrate its commitment to prevent future deaths and injuries by signing the treaty in December.
Activities taking placeLebanon. Campaigners in Lebanon are holding events in 5 different areas affected by cluster munitions on 11, 12 and 13 August 2008. Candlelight vigils will take place in the main square of Aley, in Bint Jbeil, Nabatiyeh, Tyre and Hasbayya/Rasbayya/West Bekaa. Other activities will include speeches by parliamentarians and faith leaders promoting the signing of the Convention on Cluster Munitions, a press conference and a balloon release.Khaled Yamout, NPA - Lebanon Office, landmines@npalebanon.orgCambodia. Campaigners in Cambodia are holding a vigil to commemorate the 2nd anniversary of the end of the cluster bombing in Lebanon.Denise Coghlan, Jesuit Refugee Service, denisecoghlan@yahoo.com.auNy Nhar, Jesuit Refugee Service, nynhar@yahoo.comIndia. The Indian CBL is holding a candlelight vigil in front of the statue of Mahatma Gandhi in Nagpur on 13 August.Balkrishna Kurvey, Indian CBL, bkurvey@yahoo.com Kosovo. Campaigners in Kosovo are organising an open air film screening to remember the victims of cluster bombs in Lebanon and other parts of the world.Burim Haxholli, Focus, burim.haxholli@gmail.comNepal. The Nepalese Campaign to Ban Landmines (NCBL) is organising a candlelight vigil to remember the victims of the cluster bombing of southern Lebanon.Purna Shova Chitrakar, NCBL, ncbl@mail.com.np New Zealand. In Wellington, campaigners are holding a candlelight vigil, and in Auckland a candlelight commemoration will be followed by a public talk by two visiting Pacific disarmament campaigners.Mary Wareham, Aotearoa New Zealand Cluster Munition Coalition, wareham@hrw.orgThailand. Campaigners in Thailand are holding a vigil to commemorate the cluster bombing of Lebanon in 2006.Shushira Chonhenchob, Handicap International Thailand, bkkdd@thailand-hi.org If you are planning media work, vigils or other actions please get in touch with Laura laura@stopclustermunitions.org