Lithuania Reconsiders Cluster Munition Ban


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(MSN) In July 2024, the Lithuanian government approved the Ministry of Defence's proposal to withdraw from the Oslo Convention, which bans the use, production, and transfer of cluster munitions. This decision, still needing parliamentary approval, is driven by Russia's aggressive policies and the ongoing war in Ukraine, where cluster munitions have proven highly effective. Lithuania argues these munitions offer significant defensive advantages, such as requiring less logistical effort and lower costs compared to conventional projectiles. The convention also restricts the use of cluster munitions by allied forces on Lithuanian territory, limiting their defense capabilities.

Signed by 124 countries, the 2008 Oslo Convention bans cluster munitions weighing four kilograms or less, with exceptions for certain submunitions. Lithuania is particularly interested in acquiring MGM-140 ATACMS ballistic missiles with cluster warheads, which have been effective in Ukraine. These missiles, compatible with Lithuania’s M142 HIMARS systems, have a range of 300 kilometers and carry M74 APAM bomblets that can penetrate bulletproof vests and cause fires. Lithuania's move reflects a strategic response to the harsh geopolitical reality, reconsidering the ban on cluster munitions to bolster its defense capabilities against potential threats.

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Published: Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Last Updated: Wednesday, July 10, 2024

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