The Convention on Cluster Munitions may sound like an unusual thing to celebrate, but for Laotians around the world and others affected by these deadly weapons, it's a meaningful and important step towards creating a safer world!
The Convention on Cluster Munitions prohibits all use, stockpiling, production and transfer of Cluster Munitions. Separate articles in the Convention concern assistance to victims, clearance of contaminated areas and destruction of stockpiles.Cluster Munitions are the leading cause of unexploded ordnance in Laos, where 33% of all UXO fatalities are children. Many of their parents today weren't even alive during the war for Laos that ended in 1975.
The Convention was adopted in Dublin by 107 states on May 30th, 2008 and signed later that year on December 3rd to go into force on August 1st, 2010 as a binding international law. The United States and the Obama administration is not a signatory to the convention. The First Meeting of States Parties is scheduled to be convened in Vientiane, Laos, 8 - 12 November 2010.
You can learn more about UXO in Laos by visiting www.legaciesofwar.org