Second Review Conference of the States Parties to the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) 20 September 2021

20 09 2021 CCM Rev Con statement

Agenda Item 7: Reaffirming the determination to put an end to the suffering caused by cluster munitions

Mr. President,

Sri Lanka is pleased to join the Second Review Conference of the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM), a significant milestone of the Convention. We join with other delegations in congratulating you, Mr. President and your team for your hard work and dedication in the process leading up to this important Review Conference.

Mr. President,

As a country that has never used or produced cluster munitions, we take this opportunity to renew our persistent commitment to the humanitarian principles and objectives enshrined in the Convention on Cluster Munitions. We acceded to the Convention on 1 March 2018 as a country that has been a keen and active participant in the disarmament and non-proliferation deliberations over the years. Sri Lanka had the honour to preside over the 9th Meeting of State Parties to the Convention, one year after accession to the Convention. We remain fully committed to the multilateral regime of disarmament and non- proliferation discourse and yearn to see substantive progress on some of the key outstanding issues in the realm of disarmament and non-proliferation.

As we celebrated last year the 10th anniversary of the entry into force of this very important Convention, we are encouraged by the growing number of countries acceding to the Convention and the adoption of the resolution on CCM at the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA 75) with zero no votes for the first time recognizing the indiscriminate humanitarian consequences of the use of cluster munitions. We note however that we are still behind the goal of the Dubrovnik Action Plan’s goal of 130 State Parties by this Review Conference, yet we remain hopeful that with the adoption of the Lausanne Action Plan as well as the renewed political commitment of the member States will contribute to bring on board more new State Parties committed to the objectives of the Convention.

Sri Lanka actively pursued the goal of Universalization, during its presidency in 2019 by organizing a Universalization side event in New York coinciding with the UN General Assembly session. We were also able to share our national experience with a group of non-State Parties at the South East Asia Regional Workshop on the CCM held in Manila in June 2019. Accelerated universalization is an important necessity to achieve a world free of cluster munitions. We take this opportunity to thank the ‘Coordinators on Universalization’, Chile and the Philippines for their steadfast efforts, supported by the Implementation Support Unit (ISU), towards promoting universalization including the Working paper on “Ways Forward on Universalization of the CCM”.

This Review Conference provides an important opportunity to review our work in implementing and achieving humanitarian objectives of the Convention. The Review of the Dubrovnik Action Plan and finalizing of the Lausanne Action Plan provide the necessary platform to acknowledge the challenges and difficulties that we face on our way to this Review Conference and how we could find creative strategies to achieve our common goal of achieving a world free of cluster-munitions.

Sri Lanka takes this opportunity to reiterate its commitment to the norms of the Convention and to fully endorse the principles enshrined in the Lausanne Political Declaration. As highlighted in the Lausanne Political Declaration strong national ownership and international cooperation and assistance are central elements of the full implementation of the Convention.

Prohibition of cluster munitions, would have a direct impact and effective realization of the Sustainable Development Goals, particularly Goal 16 on promoting peaceful, just, and inclusive societies. We welcome in this context the reference made to Sustainable Development Goals in the Lausanne Action Plan to be adopted during this meeting and the need to make use of synergies between implementation of other humanitarian and human rights instruments, including the Mine Ban Treaty.

Mr. President,

It is important in this context to understand that not only States that retain and deploy cluster munitions who have an obligation to stop the use of this weapon and to destroy stockpiles but the arms exporting states that produce and invest in cluster munitions also have an equal responsibility to ensure such investments are halted immediately so that eventually the world will be free of cluster munitions.

In conclusion, Mr. President, let me assure you our delegation’s full support towards successful adoption and implementation of the important documents to be adopted in this Review Conference.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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