To: President Donald Trump, The United States House of Representatives, and The United States Senate

.@POTUS: Stigmatize Russian Cluster Bombs in Syria

Name, shame, and sanction actors who specifically contribute to the use of Russian cluster bombs in Syria.

Why is this important?

On June 16, 2014, Members of the House of Representatives voted to ban the U.S. transfer of cluster bombs to Saudi Arabia, [1] which has used them in civilian areas of Yemen, in violation of U.S. law. [2] The Obama Administration has said it has stopped the transfer of cluster bombs to Saudi Arabia. [3] The U.S. company that produced these bombs, Textron, has announced that it is getting out of the cluster bomb business, citing Administration and Congressional opposition to U.S. exports. [4]

The current Russian-Syrian offensive in eastern Aleppo has used Russian cluster bombs. [5] Unfortunately, the U.S., like Russia and Syria, has still not signed the Cluster Munitions Convention, banning the use, production, stockpiling and transfer of these weapons. But the U.S. can still act to uphold and reinforce the international norm against these weapons even though the U.S. is not yet a party to the Convention, as the U.S. did when it stopped shipping them to Saudi Arabia.

The "Textron" of Russia is the Russian bomb maker Bazalt. [6] Current U.S. policy allows U.S. arms manufacturers to operate side-by-side with Bazalt at international "trade fairs" for arms exporters, such as Jordan's SOFEX arms expo in May. [7] Any U.S. move to sanction Bazalt is likely to resonate internationally: the 119 countries which are parties to the Cluster Munitions Convention are bound not only not to use cluster bombs themselves but to pursue a policy of non-cooperation with their use by others. [8]

Urge President Obama to name, shame, and sanction actors who specifically contribute to the use of Russian cluster bombs in Syria by signing our petition.

References:
1. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/obama-heeding-close-house_b_10516480.html
2. http://www.noclusterbombs.org/news/2016/05/28/transfers-ksa/
3. http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/05/27/exclusive-white-house-blocks-transfer-of-cluster-bombs-to-saudi-arabia/
4. http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/08/31/last-remaining-u-s-maker-of-cluster-bombs-stops-production/
5. http://www.noclusterbombs.org/news/2016/10/06/syria/
6. http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/defense/2006-12-06/russian-bomb-builder-shows-its-target-smarts; https://www.hrw.org/news/2012/10/23/syria-despite-denials-more-cluster-bomb-attacks
7. http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/inside-jordans-arms-fair-471360379
8. http://www.clusterconvention.org/files/2011/01/Convention-ENG.pdf

Category


Reasons for signing

  • War is always cruel, but this practice is more so, in harming so many innocent civilians.
  • Stop the use of cluster bombs.
  • Please act to prevent cooperation with these cluster bomb dealers.