The Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons; Strategic Insights: v.2, issue 3 (March 2003)
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In recent years, the negative humanitarian impact of some types of conventional weapons--landmines, for instance--has been well publicized and comprehensively regulated within several international treaties while other types of unexploded munitions, such as sub-munitions, have had a considerably lower profile. However, casualty data from international organizations involved in Kosovo indicate that unexploded sub-munitions cause more deaths than any other unexploded ordnance. Since 1980, the Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May be Deemed to be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects (CCW) has given arms control negotiators a comprehensive tool to reduce human suffering by prohibiting or restricting the use of certain conventional weapons. Entered into force in 1983, the CCW includes three initial protocols, one amended and one additional protocol. In addition, at the last Review Conference in 2001, States Parties to the Convention adopted an amendment to Article 1 of the Convention, which extended the Convention's scope to non-international conflicts. By facing humanitarian threats caused by certain conventional weapons, the CCW has become an important part of international humanitarian law.
This article appeared in Strategic Insights (March 2003), v.2 no.3
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