11 December 2015

Italy completes destruction of stockpiled cluster bombs

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Italy completed the destruction of its stockpiled cluster munitions five years before its treaty deadline. On 8 December 2015, the Permanent Mission of Italy to International Organizations in Geneva informed the Implementation Support Unit of the Convention on Cluster Munitions, that ‘Italy has completed the destruction of its entire stockpile of cluster munitions and related submunitions on 31st October 2015’.

Earlier in 2015, Italy reported possessing a total of 5,113 cluster munitions and 2.8 million submunitions. Italy, as a State Party to the Convention on Cluster Munitions, was required under Article 3 of the Convention to destroy all stockpiled cluster munitions under its jurisdiction and control as soon as possible, but no later than 1 March 2020.

“The stockpile destruction is important as the clearance. It is an essential activity to achieve a cluster bomb free world.” said Giuseppe Schiavello Director of Italian Campaign to Ban Landmines “Finishing the destruction five years in advance Italy confirms its will and commitment on disarmament field, and its role in supporting Human Rights.”

According to the Cluster Munition Monitor, United States military forces have stored cluster munitions in Italy in the past, but as of June 2015, it was not known if the US continues to stockpile cluster munitions in Italy.

Stockpile destruction has been one of the biggest successes of the convention so far, with many States Parties already finished destruction and most others with plans to finish long before their deadline.