27 March 2010
Australia Welcomes UK Legislation Banning Cluster Munitions
I congratulate the Government of the United Kingdom on the entry-into-force on 25 March of its legislation banning the use, production and stockpiling of cluster munitions.
The UK Cluster Munitions (Prohibitions) Act implements into UK domestic law the provisions of the Convention on Cluster Munitions. This decisive action by the United Kingdom is another significant step towards securing a global ban on these indiscriminate and devastating weapons.
Australia worked closely with the United Kingdom during the Convention negotiations to achieve the strongest possible ban on these weapons.
Australia is committed to a world free from cluster munitions and other explosive remnants of war. I signed the Convention for Australia at a signing ceremony hosted by the Government of Norway in Oslo on 3 December 2008.
On 18 November 2009, I also launched a new Mine Action Strategy that will support the achievement of Australia's future obligations under the Convention.
We are working to complete Australia's ratification of the Convention, including passage of our domestic legislation, as soon as possible.
The Convention will enter-into-force on 1 August this year. Laos will host the first meeting of States Party to the Convention in November this year.
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