, dropped by air or fired by artillery, scatter hundreds of bomblets across a wide area which sometimes fail to explode and are difficult to locate and remove, killing and maiming civilians long after conflicts end.
Another firm, Singapore Technologies, has promised to stop its work on cluster bombs
If the civilian casualties were indeed a miscalculation on the part of the US military, there should no longer be any doubt about the fact that cluster bombs
are far too dangerous a weapon to be utilised in war.
Bahrain has never and will never have much use for cluster bombs
, just for training purposes so it is maybe not high on the list of priorities.
However, there is nothing symbolic about the pain and bitter losses experienced by the many victims of cluster bombs
Handicap International (HI), a campaign group, says about 100,000 people have been killed or maimed by cluster bombs
worldwide since 1965, with 98 per cent of them civilians.
The United States is the world's largest producer, stockpiler and user of cluster bombs
Another cause for concern for NGOs is that the definition of the cluster bombs
to be banned excludes certain weapons from the field of the treaty.
29) These groups argue that unexploded dud cluster bomb
submunitions function like antipersonnel mines even though cluster bombs
are not covered under the 1997 Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production, and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Landmines and on their Destruction (Mine Ban Treaty).
The United States should not be in the business of selling and transferring weapons that pose such a significant risk to civilians," says Senator Dianne Feinstein, D-California, a co-sponsor of the cluster bomb
The activists said the dramatic move was timed to highlight the presence of cluster bomb
manufacturers at the Defence Systems and Equipment (DSEi) arms fair, currently taking place at the ExCel centre in the Docklands.
In a report the group disputed claims by the Ministry of Defence that only 2% of cluster bomb
lets failed to explode, leaving behind deadly live ammunition.