05 September 2017

South Sudan Bans Cluster Munitions


South Sudan 599X350

Mr. Jurkuch Barach Jurkuch, Chairperson of National Mine Action Authority of South Sudan at the 7th Meeting of States Parties. 05 August 2017 ©CMC

Today, 5 September 2017, the representative of South Sudan at the Seventh Meeting of States to the Convention on Cluster Munitions announced that “South Sudan unanimously decided to fully accede” to the Convention on Cluster Munitions. The decision was made by the South Sudan’s Council of Ministers on 25th August 2017.

The Cluster Munition Coalition congratulates South Sudan on its decision to accede and encourages it to actively promote the universalization of the Convention by inviting all states not party to join the Convention.

The Cluster Munition Monitor has seen no evidence to indicate past production, export or stockpiling of cluster munitions by the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army prior to the country becoming an independent state on 9 July 2011. At the Fifth Meeting of States Parties in September 2014, South Sudan stated that it “does not produce nor possess any cluster munitions” and declared “we do not intend to acquire or use cluster bombs”. However remnants of air-dropped cluster bombs were discovered outside the town of Bor in February 2014, after fighting between government forces and opposition fighters. South Sudan denied responsibility for this use of cluster munitions, as did Uganda, which was providing air-support to the government of South Sudan at the time. The ban on the use of cluster munitions is the most important obligation for States Parties.

44 of the 54 countries in Africa have ratified or acceded to the Convention. 12 countries (Angola, Central African Republic, DR Congo, Djibouti, Gambia, Kenya, Liberia, Namibia, Nigeria, Sao Tomé and Principe, Tanzania, Uganda) have signed the Convention. 10 countries in Africa (Algeria, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Libya, Morocco, Sudan, Zimbabwe) have not joined the Convention yet.

South Sudan’s instrument of accession to Convention on Cluster Munition has not been submitted to the Secretary-General of the United Nations yet.

Also, South Sudan announced its decision to accede to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW).