Cluster Munition Ban Policy
Summary: State Party Lebanon ratified the convention on 5 November 2010, becoming the first State Party from the Middle East. Lebanon has expressed its desire to amend existing legislation to enforce the convention’s provisions. It has participated in every meeting of the convention and hosted the convention’s Second Meeting of States Parties in Beirut in September 2011. Lebanon was a lead sponsor on a UN resolution on the convention in December 2015. It has condemned new use of cluster munitions and elaborated its views on a number of important issues relating to the interpretation and implementation of the convention. Lebanon reports that it has never used, produced, or stockpiled cluster munitions. Cluster munitions were used in the past in Lebanon, most recently by Israel in 2006.
The Republic of Lebanon signed the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 3 December 2008, ratified on 5 November 2010, and the convention entered into force for the country on 1 May 2011.
Following a legislative review, Lebanon in September 2012 announced its desire to amend existing legislation to ensure implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions. In April 2013, it stated that a final report with recommendations on national measures had been drafted for circulation to stakeholders.
Lebanon submitted its initial Article 7 transparency report for the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 27 October 2011 and provided annual updated reports since then, most recently in March 2016.
Lebanon participated throughout the Oslo Process that created the Convention on Cluster Munitions and advocated forcefully for humanitarian protection to be accorded first priority in the development of the convention’s provisions. It hosted a regional conference on cluster munitions in Beirut from 11–12 November 2008 to draw attention to the convention and its Oslo Signing Conference.
Lebanon hosted the convention’s Second Meeting of States Parties in Beirut on 12–16 September 2011. Lebanon’s President General Michel Sleiman addressed the meeting’s opening ceremony with a statement that condemned the use of cluster munitions. Lebanon’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and Emigrants, Adnan Mansour, served as president of the Second Meeting of States Parties with the assistance of Lebanon’s Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva, Ambassador Najla Riachi Assaker.
Lebanon continues to play an active role in the work of the convention. From September 2014 until September 2015, it served as co-coordinator of the convention’s work on the general status and operation of the convention together with the Netherlands. In this role, Lebanon played a central role in helping to establish an implementation support unit (ISU) for the convention, including securing agreement on the financial procedures for its operation.
Lebanon participated in the convention’s First Review Conference in Dubrovnik, Croatia in September 2015, where it made several statements. In an address to the high-level segment of the meeting, Lebanon urged States Parties to pay greater attention to their international cooperation and assistance to ensure full implementation of the convention.
Lebanon was a lead sponsor on and voted in favor of a UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolution on the convention adopted on 7 December 2015, which urges all states outside the convention to “join as soon as possible.” A total of 139 states voted in favor of the non-binding resolution including many non-signatories.
Lebanon has participated in every Meeting of States Parties of the convention and the First Review Conference, as well as intersessional meetings in Geneva in 2011–2015. It has convened and participated in regional workshops on cluster munitions.
Lebanon has stated it is disturbed and deeply concerned at “cluster munition use anywhere by anyone.” At the First Review Conference, Lebanon said, “we believe any use of cluster munitions must be condemned, regardless of who used.” At the UNGA First Committee on Disarmament and International Security in October 2015, Lebanon’s representative stated that “based on its continuous painful experience as a victim of these weapons since 2006, Lebanon condemns any use of cluster munitions and calls for the universalization of the Convention.”
Lebanon is not party to the Mine Ban Treaty. It is also not party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons.
Lebanon has elaborated its views on several important issues relating to the convention’s interpretation and implementation. It has stated that the prohibition on the transfer of cluster munitions includes a prohibition on “transit,” that foreign stockpiling of cluster munitions is prohibited, that financing and investment in cluster munition production or transfer is prohibited, and that Article 1 of the convention takes precedence over Article 21 so that “States Parties must never undertake any act that could constitute deliberate assistance with a prohibited act.”
Use, production, transfer, and stockpiling
Lebanon has stated several times that it has never used, produced, or stockpiled cluster munitions. It has confirmed no production of cluster munitions in its Article 7 reports.
Lebanon has not retained any cluster munitions for training or research purposes because it says it sees no reason to do so as the “detection of submunition remnants does not require a more sophisticated technology than what currently exists.”
Israel used cluster munitions in Lebanon in 1978, 1982, and 2006. The United States (US) dropped cluster bombs against Syrian air defense units near Beirut during an intervention in December 1983. In 2006, Hezbollah fired cluster munitions from southern Lebanon into northern Israel.
 Statement of Lebanon, Convention on Cluster Munitions Third Meeting of States Parties, Oslo, 11 September 2012.
 Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form A, 15 April 2013. Lebanon did not report any new information under national implementation measures in its most recent Article 7 report. See, Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form A, 22 March 2016.
 The time periods covered by the reports are as follows: Article 7 Report submitted October 2011 (from 13 October 1990 to 27 October 2011), April 2012 (27 October 2011 to 9 April 2012), April 2013 (calendar year 2012), 15 April 2014 (calendar year 2013), 30 April 2015 (calendar year 2014), and 22 March 2016 (calendar year 2015).
 For details on Lebanon’s policy and practice regarding cluster munitions through early 2009, see Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Landmine Action, Banning Cluster Munitions: Government Policy and Practice (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada, May 2009), pp. 105–107.
 A total of 131 governments participated in the meeting (52 States Parties, 38 signatories, and 40 observer states), as well representatives from UN agencies, the ICRC, and the CMC. UN, “Final Document, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Meeting of States Parties,” CCM/MSP/2011/5, Beirut, 16 September 2011.
 Statement of Lebanon, Convention on Cluster Munitions First Review Conference, Dubrovnik, 7 September 2015.
 “Implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions,” UNGA Resolution 70/54, 7 December 2015.
 Statement of Lebanon, Convention on Cluster Munitions Intersessional Meetings, Geneva, 23 June 2015. Notes by the CMC.
 Statement of Lebanon, Convention on Cluster Munitions First Review Conference, Dubrovnik, 7 September 2015.
 Statement of Lebanon, UNGA First Committee on Disarmament and International Security, New York, 15 October 2015.
 Letter from the Permanent Mission of Lebanon to the UN in Geneva, 10 February 2009. It states: “It is the understanding of the Government of Lebanon that the transit of cluster munitions across, or foreign stockpiling of cluster munitions on the national territory of States Parties is prohibited by the Convention. Article /1/ paragraph (b) of the Convention explicitly prohibits all stockpiling and all transfers...It is the understanding of the Government of Lebanon that all assistance with prohibited acts is prohibited under Article /1/ paragraph (c) of the Convention. While Article 21 allows for military cooperation with states non party to the Convention it does not allow any assistance with prohibited acts. In the view of Lebanon Article /1/ paragraph (c) takes precedence over Article 21 and States Parties must never undertake any act that could constitute deliberate assistance with a prohibited act. It is the understanding of the Government of Lebanon that Article /1/ paragraph (c) of the Convention prohibits the investment in entities engaged in the production or transfer of cluster munitions or investment in any company that provides financing to such entities. In the view of Lebanon ‘assistance’ as stipulated in Article /1/ paragraph (c) includes investment in entities engaged in the production or transfer of cluster munitions and is thus prohibited under the Convention.”
 Letter from the Permanent Mission of Lebanon to the UN in Geneva, 10 February 2009; Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, 27 October 2011; “Cluster Munition Monitor 2012,” document provided in letter from the Permanent Mission of Lebanon to the UN in Geneva to HRW, Ref 8/27/1 & 131/2012, 7 June 2012; and statement of Lebanon, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Meeting of States Parties, Beirut, 14 September 2011.
 Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form E, 15 April 2014.
 Statement of Lebanon, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Meeting of States Parties, Beirut, 14 September 2011.
 HRW, “Meeting the Challenge: Protecting Civilians through the Convention on Cluster Munitions,” November 2010, pp. 33–38. For details on Israel’s use of cluster munitions in Lebanon and its impact, see HRW, Flooding South Lebanon: Israel’s Use of Cluster Munitions in Lebanon in July and August 2006 (Vol. 20, No. 2(E), February 2008); and Landmine Action, “Foreseeable harm: the use and impact of cluster munitions in Lebanon: 2006,” October 2006.
 US Department of the Navy, Attack Squadron 15, Memorandum from Commanding Officer, Attack Squadron 15, to Chief of Naval Operations, “Command History: Enclosure 5, Ordnance Expenditure for 1983,” 18 February 1984, declassified 28 April 2000.
 HRW, “Civilians Under Assault: Hezbollah’s Rocket Attacks on Israel in the 2006 War,” August 2007, pp. 44–48. Hezbollah fired about 100 Chinese-produced Type-81 122mm cluster munition rockets, each of which contains 39 Type-90 submunitions, also known as MZD-2. In June 2012, Lebanon provided the Monitor with the following statement: “In the aftermath of the 2006 Israeli aggression, the Lebanese army found several kinds of unexploded cluster munitions on the Lebanese territory. Among these found were used and failed Chinese made MZD2. All (MZD2) were found in an area that is 10 kilometers away from the Lebanese – Occupied Palestine borders. Lebanon does not stockpile any kind of cluster munitions, it has not used any in the past, and the Lebanese Government considers all failed or unexploded cluster munitions or submunitions on the Lebanese soil as a legacy of the Israeli aggression on Lebanon; it should be noted though that these MZD2 munitions were only found after the 2006 aggression.” “Cluster Munition Monitor 2012,” document provided in letter from the Permanent Mission of Lebanon to the UN in Geneva to HRW, Ref 8/27/1 & 131/2012, 7 June 2012.