As part of a new military package that was disclosed last Friday, President Joe Biden has authorized plans to give Ukraine highly-controversial cluster bombs, which goes against longtime U.S. policy.
Cluster munitions are essentially small fragment bombs that can disperse several explosions across a large area. However, these devices are unpopular because of the additional civilian deaths they may inflict.
Reports show the Ukrainian armed forces will be supplied by the Department of Defense with weapons that have a higher failure rate than is allowed under American law. A bomb’s “dud rate” is the percentage of times it fails to go off as planned.
Unexploded munitions have the potential to cause injuries or fatalities to civilians if it is accidentally detonated in the future.
According to a report, U.S. law has banned cluster bombs with a failure rate of greater than 1% for a long time. But as chief executive, Biden may go around Congress’s directive.
Ukraine has been requesting more cluster bombs from the United States since last year, but the Biden administration had been reluctant to provide them due to the fact that over 100 nations have signed previous accords prohibiting their use on the battlefield.
As Ukrainian troops grow more entrenched in places like Bakhmut, the decision comes as the Summer counteroffensive toward the Russians in eastern Ukraine has faltered.
Concern has been voiced by the 11th Meeting of States Parties President (Iraq) to the Convention on Cluster Bombs (CCM) over the United States’ plan to ship cluster bombs to Ukraine.
In his message, the President warns of the dangers presented by cluster bombs and calls for the Convention’s requirements to be followed elsewhere in the world.
The President’s message highlights the common concerns of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, the Cluster Munition Coalition, and many CCM States Parties. His words are an appeal to all nations to halt their involvement in the design, manufacture, acquisition, storage, usage, and distribution of cluster bombs. It also restates the Convention’s signatories’ commitment to promoting international stability.