26 March 2008

The Global Day Of Action To Ban Cluster Bombs

On 19th April 2008, Make History: Ban Cluster Bombs in Dublin The Global Day of Action to Ban Cluster Bombs is a designated day of action to highlight 40 years of civilian deaths and injuries caused by cluster bombs. Citizens around the world will use this day to call on governments to take action now and make history.The Global Day of Action takes place 1 month before the Dublin Diplomatic Conference on Cluster Munitions. At the Dublin Conference (19 – 30 May 2008) governments from across the world will meet to negotiate the most significant disarmament treaty in more than a decade: a treaty that will bring about a ban on cluster bombs, rapid clearance of contaminated land and an increase in the vital assistance to those affected by cluster bombs.The CMC is calling on governments to rise to this historic opportunity by participating in the Dublin Conference and delivering a strong and comprehensive treaty that will make a real difference to people’s lives.The CMC is asking governments to:1. Endorse the Wellington Declaration. All governments must endorse the Wellington Declaration to participate in the Dublin Conference. So far 85 governments have endorsed the Wellington Declaration which gives support for the draft Cluster Munitions Treaty. Governments should endorse the Wellington Declaration by sending an official note by fax to the Government of New Zealand. Some target countries to call on to endorse the Wellington Declaration include:

  • Africa: Chad, Guinea-Bissau, Lesotho, Liberia, Tanzania
  • Latin America: Bolivia, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama, Venezuela
  • MENA: Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Yemen
  • SE Asia: Thailand, Vietnam
  • South / Central Asia: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Nepal
  • CIS: Azerbaijan, Tajikistan
  • Europe: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Greece, Latvia, Liechtenstein
2. Make History: Participate in the Dublin Diplomatic Conference on Cluster Munitions from 19 – 30 May 2008 at a senior level to negotiate and adopt the treaty. The Government of Ireland has just sent out invitations to the Foreign Ministers of countries that have previously participated in Oslo Process Conferences.3. Support a strong and comprehensive treaty, with NO exceptions, NO delays and NO loopholes. The CMC is calling for a treaty that does not exempt cluster munitions based on claims of technical fixes; a treaty that does not have a transition period to allow use of the banned weapons; and a treaty that prohibits all assistance in the production, stockpiling and use of cluster munitions, including in joint operations.Call to Action!On the last Global Day of Action on 5 November 2007, citizens took action in more than 40 countries. It is crucial that campaigners take part on this Global Day of Action on 19 April by organising an action targeted at their government, however big or small, and through targeted media outreach. Remember you can also use the 18th as the day for your event if it is focused on government officials or media representatives that may not be available on the 19th which is a Saturday.Campaigners should organise an action or event that demonstrates public support for a treaty banning cluster bombs and puts public pressure on governments to negotiate a strong and comprehensive treaty at the Dublin Conference. A key aim is to generate media coverage of the issue, the campaign and the Dublin Conference.Priority Actions1. Collecting petition signatures at public events and actions.2. Asking Faith Leaders to sign the Multi-Faith Leaders’ Letter and then placing it in your national and local newspapers.Other Actions And EventsPublic actions and events can include but are not limited to: marches, rallies and protests; ‘stunts’ and set-up photo opportunities; email actions; petition hand-over events to governments; film screenings, photo exhibitions and public talks; press conferences and targeted media work. Where possible, campaigners should incorporate petition actions in their events.Key people and organisations to engage with. Make sure you invite civil society partners including cluster munition survivors; government representatives including civil servants, ministers and parliamentarians; the UN and ICRC; clearance, policy and other experts; Irish, Mexican, Norwegian, New Zealand and Austrian embassies, faith leaders and other public figures and celebrities to take part in your actions or events.1. National petitions and signatures collectionsThe global petition run by Handicap International has more than half a million signatures and will be handed over to the Irish government at the Dublin Conference. It will call on the government of Ireland as Chair of the conference to ensure the successful negotiation of a strong treaty. We will include signatures from all the CMC national petitions calling for a ban on cluster munitions in the hand-over of the global petition in Dublin.Collect signatures. Campaigners are encouraged to use the Global Day of Action to ask members of the public to sign a national petition calling on your government to ban cluster munitions. Collect signatures at an event you are organising such as a film screening or public talk, or another big public event that is attended by large numbers of people such as a sports event or concert. You could also collect photographs of supporters and in particular celebrities, holding a sign with a key message on it such as ‘Make History: Ban Cluster Bombs’.Organise a photo opportunity for the media. Set up a photo opportunity that will attract the media by organising a stunt or action and by engaging influential government figures and parliamentarians, and / or celebrities and public figures.Ideas for petition actions and photo opportunities: Use the theme ‘Hands Up Who Wants to Ban Cluster Bombs’
  • Organise for a crowd of supporters to gather in a public place, everyone in the crowd should stand in a position so that the crowd forms a hand-shape, giving a good aerial photograph.
  • Put up a giant wooden, cardboard or inflatable ‘hand’ in a public place to attract attention and provide a good photograph. Set up a booth to collect signatures next to it. Invite key figures to come and support your event and sign your petition and invite the media to capture it.
  • Put up a petition wall where campaigners can hang petition cards showing their support for a ban. Petition cards can be hung up to spell out ‘Ban Cluster Bombs’ or other messages. Invite key figures to come and support your event and sign your petition and invite the media to capture it.
  • Ask members of the public to lie down and have their outline drawn around them in chalk in a public space to show their support for a ban, and ask them to sign your petition.
  • Invite key speakers to attend your events at a set time to sign the petition and give a statement of support for a ban on cluster munitions and deliver the message to your government. Take photographs of key figures signing your petition. Make sure you invite the media!
  • Set up an email action targeting the Foreign Minister and mobilise national supporters and networks to take part.
  • Set up a link to the global HI petition from your website and on the Global Day of Action and in the run up to the Dublin Conference ask your supporters to sign the petition. Ask other organisations in your national network to do the same.
  • Handing over petitions to governments. On the Global Day of Action or on an alternative date before the Dublin Conference, campaigners should hand over their national petitions to their governments before they go to Dublin to make sure governments leave for Dublin with a sense of responsibility to negotiate a strong treaty within the 2 weeks of the conference.
Target countries for national petitions:Bad guy countries: Don’t weaken the treaty!Australia, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, UK.Good guy countries: Stay strong!Argentina, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Costa Rica, Cambodia, Ghana, Kenya, Jordan, Lebanon, Philippines, Sierra Leone, Tajikistan, Thailand, Uganda, Zambia.2. Faith and Religious Leader’s letterThe CMC is calling on faith and religious leaders from different religions, cultures and continents across the world to sign the letter, giving their support to a ban on cluster munitions and calling on governments to rise to this responsibility.Ask religious leaders to put their name to the letter. Send the letter to religious and faith leaders in your country before the Global Day of Action asking them to put their name to the letter which will be printed in national newspapers around the world on this day. Ask leaders from different religions and faiths to support the letter. You could also send the letter to religious organisations to circulate within their networks and to faith leaders they know.Send the CMC a list of the faith leaders that you are contacting and keep us updated on which ones sign on to the letter. Laura Cheeseman is keeping a record of all signatories and need to know their name, title, religion and the country they are from.Contact your national and local newspapers and ask them to print the letter. The list of faith leaders from across the world that have signed up to the letter will be made available to campaigners a few days before the Global Day of Action to place in newspapers. Yu can contact the CMC for an update on the faith leaders that have been contacted and those that have signed onto the letter.3. Media outreachOrganise a press conference: Put forward the key messages to your government by organising a press conference. Encourage a representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to announce its support for a strong treaty and to announce endorsement of the Wellington Declaration at the press conference. Invite key speakers such as civil society representatives including cluster munition survivors; government representatives including civil servants, ministers and parliamentarians; the UN and ICRC; Irish, Mexican, Norwegian, New Zealand and Austrian embassies, faith leaders and other public figures and celebrities.
  • Radio: Contact the local and national radio stations and ask if you can arrange an interview on the Global Day of Action on 19 April, or the day before on the 18, interviewing you and other spokespersons.
  • TV: Contact TV channels and offer them broadcast-quality footage of cluster bomb attacks, clearance, the impact of cluster munitions, interviews and more, to show as a feature on that day or to use in addition to a report on your event.
  • Press: In addition to placing the Multi-Faith Letter, you can try and place a Letter to the Editor or Opinion-Editorial written by a key figure or telling a personal story. The CMC can provide you with ideas for and help with writing op-eds and can provide high-resolution images for press work.
  • Advertising campaign: There are 2 posters that campaigners can use to place in newspapers, online and to put up in public venues around town. There is the generic Global Day of Action Poster and the ‘Spot The Odd One Out’ poster that highlights children’s toys that have been removed from the market because of the harm caused to children, while cluster munitions still remain on the shelf in many countries’ arsenals. In your advertising campaign, add a website address where supporters can sign your national petition or the global HI petition.
Key messages
  • Ban Cluster Bombs
  • Make History
  • No Exceptions, No Delays No Loopholes
  • It’s now or never – states must take responsibility
  • This is the most significant disarmament treaty of the decade
  • The treaty will change the lives of affected communities worldwide, including support for survivors and their families and clearance of land
  • One global effort by countries and campaigners can have a great impact than any superpower
  • Ireland has a huge responsibility to affected countries and the world
Additional Campaign & Media ResourcesDownload and print or ask the CMC for copies of CMC campaigning materials including:
  • Global Day of Action poster
  • Other posters:’ Hand Up’, Spot the Odd One Out, Chalk Silhouette action
  • Stickers & badges
  • Action cards and sample petition text
  • Information leaflets
  • Films: Unacceptable Harm (several cluster bomb affected countries), Bombies (Laos), Yellow Killers (Serbia), Dateline (Lebanon), a Dutch documentary film on disinvestment
  • CMC Treaty Principles photograph booklet
  • Faith Leaders’ letter
  • Template press release
  • Question and Answers
  • Photographs including high resolution images
  • Broadcast quality footage
Make sure your action is counted!1. Keep in contact with the CMC staff and make sure the action in your country is added to the Global Event Calendar and that your campaign is counted as taking part. We will direct journalists and interested members of the public and organisations in your country to you.2. Let us know how many signatures you have collected so far and aim to collect before the Dublin Conference. We will keep a list of the target numbers of signatures to be collected for national petitions and the global total for the hand-over in Dublin.3. Please also let us know which faith leaders you are contacting and which of them sign onto the Faith Leaders’ Letter so that we can distribute a list of all faith leaders with the letter for you to place in your local and national newspapers.4. Let us know how we at the CMC can support you. Staff can provide campaign materials, media tools, advice and some small grants to pay for printing materials and in some cases covering some event costs.ContactCampaigners should Laura Cheeseman to register your action on the Global Day of Action on 19 April and with any other queries or requests laura@stopclustermunitions.orgICBL campaigners can also get in touch with Kasia Derlicka kasia@icbl.orgJournalist enquiries, and for queries related to media work, contact Natalie Curtis Natalie@stopclustermunitions.org