Discussions on cluster munitions have been ongoing in some form or another in the forum of the 1980 Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) for more than a decade. Since 2007 a Group of Government Experts (GGE) has been meeting regularly to negotiate a new legally binding agreement. The mandate for the GGE in 2011 is “to address urgently the humanitarian impact of cluster munitions, while striking a balance between military and humanitarian considerations.” In late 2010 a draft protocol on cluster munitions (CCW/GGE/2010-II/WP.2) was circulated by the chair of the GGE. Apparently supplanting this text, a revised “Advance Version” of a new text prepared by the chair was distributed in March 2011.

In this memo, Human Rights Watch discusses five myths about the CCW protocol on cluster munitions.