NEW YORK, 19 February 2010 – UNICEF welcomes the thirtieth ratification of the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) which took place Tuesday. With this ratification, all the necessary conditions for the Convention – which bans cluster munitions, a weapon that has killed and injured scores of civilians, including many children – to enter into force have now been met.
“All the States that have signed and ratified this historic treaty deserve our praise” said Hilde F. Johnson, Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF. “When the convention comes into effect six months from Tuesday’s ratification, we will witness the beginning of the end of the use of a class of weapons that have caused untold pain and suffering to children in many troubled countries around the world.”
Cluster munitions deprive children of some of their most fundamental rights, including the right to life, right to protection and in many occasions their right to education and health often simply by blocking their access to such services. Children are too often the victims of cluster munitions, when they find these deadly weapons near their homes, on the way to school, or while at play with their friends.
“UNICEF fully supports the implementation and universalization of this treaty, because it will make the world a safer place for all, especially for children,” said Hilde F. Johnson, Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF. “The next challenge will be to dispose of the billions of cluster munitions stockpiled around the world.”
UNICEF is on the ground in over 150 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.
For further information, please contact:
Rebecca Fordham, New York, Tel + 1 212 326 7162,