The Convention on Cluster Munitions includes an obligation never to use, produce, transfer or stockpile cluster munitions. It also includes several positive obligations to ensure no further use and to redress past harm caused by the weapons.
International cooperation and assistance (Article 6)
The Convention on Cluster Munitions requires members states to destroy their stockpiles, clear all land contaminated with cluster munition remnants, and provide assistance to victims – but they do not need to carry the burden all alone. The convention also calls on all states “in a position to do so” to provide technical, material and financial assistance to others for clearance, risk education, stockpile destruction and victim assistance. Given the wide variety of support that can be given, including sharing of best practices, information, and expertise, a large number of countries are in a position to assist other States Parties and therefore must do so under the convention.
Indeed, international cooperation and assistance concerns much more than financial support. Many states, often affected states themselves, have been providing other countries with a variety of technical and material aid. The broader community of actors supporting the work of the convention, including the UN, NGOs, the International Committee of the Red Cross and other stakeholders, also have a wide array of support they can give.
Information on international support for implementing the Convention on Cluster Munitions can be found in the latest Cluster Munition Monitor.
Summary of the key convention obligations
Article 6 of the Convention states that all States Parties "in a position to do so...shall provide technical, material, and financial assistance to States Parties affected by cluster munitions, aimed at the implementation of the obligations of this Convention.” The article applies to the implementation of all obligations of the Convention, with a focus on the clearance of cluster munition remnants, assistance to cluster munition victims, and the destruction of stockpiled cluster munitions.
In addition, under the clearance obligations former user States Parties are strongly encouraged to provide assistance to States Parties who have been affected by their use of cluster munitions.