Together Against Cluster Munitions - Action Group Landmine.de press conference with Bianca Jagger and Claudia Roth
On a press conference by the Action Group Landmine.de on February 13th 2007 in Berlin Bianca Jagger supported the claim to ban cluster munitions in the run-up to the Oslo Conference on Cluster Munitions (22.-23.2.2007). The carrier of the Alternative Nobel Price said in Berlin that it amounts to a criminal act to produce cluster munitions. Many children were killed because they thought these were toys.
With the conference which is taking place outside the framework of the UN the Norwegian government starts a new initiative against cluster munitions. The conference, to which 40 states are invited, is supposed to establish a new basis for the ban on cluster munitions. The Green Party and the Action Group Landmine.de used the press conference to caution the German government that the deployment of Tornados in Afghanistan could also be used to determine targets for the use of cluster munitions. "It needs to be guaranteed that the members of a joined deployment abstain from using cluster munitions, the leader of the Green Party said. This would be one of the questions the German government ought to answer. There was no doubt that cluster munitions were discharged over Afghanistan in the US-led fight against terror which is part of the "Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF)."
Thomas Gebauer from medico international demanded from the German government to change its policies. "Instead of hiding behind technical parameters Germany should be guided by humanitarian aspects on the Oslo Conference and support a new Ottawa-process to ban cluster munitions like 1997 on the issue of anti-personal mines" demands Gebauer. The Action Group Landmine.de also asks the 40 participating countries of the conference to decide on unilateral arrangements as well. "Already in Oslo every participating country should set the course for a national moratorium which bans cluster munitions, says Thomas Küchenmeister from the Action Group Landmine.de. The moratoriums which ban the use, the storing, the production, the transfer, and the export of cluster munitions should be binding until an all-embracing international agreement on the banning of cluster munitions is negotiated. Due to current reasons Mr. Küchenmeister urges the German government and the government of the federal countries to use their recently acquired holding of the cluster munitions producer EADS to urge them to abandon the trade with cluster munitions.
The Action Group Landmine.de thanks Bianca Jagger for the participation on the press conference and her engagement against cluster munitions.