Summary: Non-signatory Kuwait has acknowledged the humanitarian concerns raised by cluster munitions, but has not taken any steps to accede to the convention. Kuwait has participated in a couple of meetings of the convention, but not since 2013, and abstained from a vote on a key United Nations (UN) resolution promoting the convention in December 2017.
Kuwait is not known to have used or produced cluster munitions, but it imported them and possesses a stockpile.
The State of Kuwaithas not acceded to the Convention on Cluster Munitions.
Kuwait has acknowledged the humanitarian concerns raised by cluster munitions, but not taken any steps to accede to the convention.In September 2011, Kuwait told States Parties that the convention contains “important humanitarian, social, economic dimensions that oblige the international community to put forward suitable solution [sic] to end future use of this weapon.” Kuwait said in 2009–2011 that it was studying the implications of accession to the convention, but it has not given any indication since then that it is still considering joining.
Kuwait participated in the Oslo Process to develop the convention, including as an observer in the Dublin negotiations in May 2008.
Kuwait has participated as an observer in several meetings of the convention, but not since 2013.
In December 2017, Kuwait abstained from voting on a key UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolution on the Convention on Cluster Munitions, which urges states outside the convention to “join as soon as possible.” It abstained from voting on previous UNGA resolutions promoting the convention in 2015 and 2016.
Kuwait has voted in favor of UNGA resolutions expressing outrage at the use of cluster munitions in Syria, most recently in December 2017.
Use, production, transfer, and stockpiling
Kuwait is not known to have used, produced, or exported cluster munitions, but it imported them and possesses a stockpile.
The United States (US) may stockpile cluster munitions in Kuwait, according to a US diplomatic cable dated May 2007. Kuwait imported the Russian-produced 27 Smerch300mm multiple launch rocket system fitted with dual-purpose and sensor-fuzed submunitions in 1995. Additionally, Jane’s Information Group lists Kuwait as possessing the Hydra-70 air-to-surface unguided rocket system, but it is not known if this includes the M261 multipurpose submunition variant.
 Interview with Zeyad al-Mashan, Counsellor, Permanent Mission of Kuwait to the UN in Geneva, in Beirut, 14 September 2011; CMC meeting with the Kuwaiti delegation to the Convention on Cluster Munitions First Meeting of States Parties, Vientiane, 9 November 2010; and ICBL meeting with the Kuwaiti delegation to the Mine Ban Treaty Second Review Conference, Cartagena, 30 November–4 December 2009.
 For details on Kuwait’s cluster munition policy and practice up to early 2009, see Human Rights Watch and Landmine Action, Banning Cluster Munitions: Government Policy and Practice (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada, May 2009), p. 220. In September 2011, Wikileaks released a United States (US) Department of State cable showing that in a 22 May 2007 meeting the US asked Kuwait to “reconsider” its participation in the Lima conference on cluster munitions. Kuwait did not attend the Lima conference, which was held on 23–25 May 2007. “U.S.-Kuwait Gulf Security Dialogue Talks,” US Department of State cable dated 5 June 2007, released by Wikileaks on 1 September 2011.
 Kuwait participated as an observer in the convention’s First Meeting of States Parties in Vientiane, Lao PDR in November 2010 and the Second Meeting of States Parties in Beirut, Lebanon in September 2011. It attended the convention’s intersessional meetings in 2012 and 2013.
 “Implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions,” UNGA Resolution 72/54, 4 December 2017.
 “Situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic,” UNGA Resolution 72/191, 19 December 2017. Kuwait voted in favor of similar resolutions in 2013–2016.
 The cable contains the text of a message sent from a US military advisor to United Arab Emirates (UAE) authorities concerning a transfer of “ammunition immediately via US Air Force aircraft from Kuwait stockpile to Lebanon.” With respect to the items to be transferred, the cable states: “The United States will not approve any cluster munitions or white phosphorus.” “Follow-up on UAE response to Lebanese request for emergency aid,” US Department of State cable 07ABUDHABI876 dated 24 May 2007, released by Wikileaks on 1 September 2011.
 “Kuwait to get smart submunitions for Smerch MRL,” Jane’s Defence Weekly, 21 April 1995.
 Colin King, ed., Jane’s Explosive Ordnance Disposal, CD-edition, 10 January 2008 (Surrey, UK: Jane’s Information Group Limited, 2008).