01 September 2015

Iceland Bans Cluster Bombs

 Iceland Signing The Treaty 599X530

Signing the Convention in Oslo, Dec. 2008. © Gunnar Mjaugedal/catchlight.no

Iceland deposited its instrument of ratification of the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 31 August 2015 at the United Nations’ headquarters in New York. Congratulations on becoming the 95th State Party!

A signatory of the Convention on Cluster Munitions since 2008, Iceland has never stockpiled, used, produced, or transferred cluster munitions. In 2013, Iceland voted in favour of the UN General Assembly resolution that condemned the use of cluster munitions in Syria.

“Iceland made a big effort this year to prioritise ratification of the Convention on Cluster Munitions. As use of the weapon continues in Syria and Yemen, and cluster munition remnants continue to take lives and limbs worldwide, it's important that other nations join Iceland in putting the protection of civilians first”, said Amy Little of Norwegian People's Aid (NPA) a member of the Cluster Munition Coalition.

Iceland was an active participant in the Oslo Process and was among the states to endorse the Oslo Declaration in February 2007. It attended the formal negotiations in Dublin in May 2008 and made a strong statement on “interoperability”. Iceland said that Article 21 should not be seen as undercutting the obligation in Article 1 not to assist with any activity prohibited by the convention, even during joint military operations with states not party to the convention.

"I am very pleased that Iceland has ratified the Convention on Cluster Munitions - a landmark treaty which we have supported from the start. I urge all remaining states to follow suit and ratify the Convention. Our work is not done until the last cluster munition has been destroyed." Gunnar Bragi Sveinsson, Icelandic Minister for Foreign Affairs.

The Convention will enter into force for Iceland on 1 February 2016.