PSALM MEMBERS JOIN INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY IN DENOUNCING USE OF CLUSTER BOMBS IN UKRAINE
As members of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines and Cluster Munition Coalition (ICBL-CMC), the West Virginia Campaign to Ban Landmines and Cluster bombs as well as student organization, PSALM, strongly condemns the confirmed use of cluster munitions by Russian forces in the Ukraine, and the death and injury of civilians, as reported by the New York Times and Human Rights Watch.
We call for an immediate halt to use of the internationally banned weapon, and urge all parties to guarantee protection of civilians, respect for international humanitarian law, and the international norm banning use of cluster munitions and landmines.
PSALM students are committed to educating the public about the indiscriminate nature of anti-personnel landmines and cluster munitions leading to the destruction of innocent life, especially children. Students feel it is unacceptable that unarmed civilians become targets of these insidious weapons long after wartime hostilities cease. PSALM students are outraged that children, the most vulnerable of society, are all too often the victims of these indiscriminate weapons, many left after conflicts long since over, coming upon them in the most innocent of activities like playing or going to school. These weapons instill fear in whole communities, deepening poverty and acting as a lethal barrier to development.
Cluster munitions were previously used in the conflict in Ukraine between July 2014 and February 2015, though the extent of existing contamination is unknown. Cluster munitions are indiscriminate weapons that overwhelmingly kill and injure civilians, and leave a deadly legacy of contamination threatening lives and hindering recovery for years to come.
On April 8th, PSALM will host a “Lend Your Leg” Day which encourages people worldwide by a simple but symbolic gesture of rolling up a pant leg to raise awareness about the damage landmines and cluster munitions still cause and show solidarity with all survivors and persons with disabilities.
ICBL-CMC works for a world free of landmines, cluster munitions, and other explosive remnants of war, where all lives are protected. A world where contaminated land is cleared and returned to local populations for productive use and where the needs of affected communities and survivors are met and their human rights guaranteed.