Cluster Munition Ban Policy

Last updated: 02 August 2019

Summary: Slovakia acceded to the convention on 24 July 2015 after implementing an action plan to join it. Slovakia has participated in the convention’s meetings, most recently in September 2018. It voted in favor of a key United Nations (UN) resolution promoting the convention in December 2018.

Slovakia is not known to have used cluster munitions, but it produced, imported, and exported them in the past. Slovakia has reported a total stockpile of 1,235 cluster munitions and 299,187 submunitions. Between 2015 and the end of 2018, Slovakia destroyed 643 cluster munitions and 33,398 submunitions. It is on track to complete destruction of the stockpile by its January 2024 deadline. Slovakia intends to destroy cluster munitions that it originally indicated would be retained for research and training purposes.


The Slovak Republic acceded to the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 24 July 2015 and became a State Party on 1 January 2016.

Slovakia has not enacted specific legislation to enforce its implementation of the convention’s provisions. It lists the Penal Code and various arms trafficking laws under relevant national implementation measures.[1]

Slovakia provided its initial Article 7 transparency measures report for the convention on 28 June 2016 and has submitted annual updates since then, most recently on 31 July 2019.[2]

Slovakia actively participated in the Oslo Process that led to the creation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions and joined the consensus adoption of the convention in Dublin in May 2008. However, it participated only as an observer at the convention’s Signing Conference in Oslo in December 2008.[3]

Slovakia acceded to the convention in July 2015 after implementing a November 2008 decree that established a process to develop an action plan for its accession.[4] Implementation of the action plan resulted in the 26 June 2015 adoption by its parliament—the National Council—of a resolution approving accession to the convention.

Prior to acceding, Slovakia participated as an observer in the convention’s meetings.[5] It attended the First Review Conference in Dubrovnik, Croatia in September 2015 as a State Party and has participated in subsequent meetings, most recently the Eighth Meeting of States Parties in Geneva in September 2018.

In December 2018, Slovakia voted in favor of a key UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolution that calls on states outside the Convention on Cluster Munitions to “join as soon as possible.”[6] Slovakia has voted in favor of the annual UNGA resolution promoting the convention since it was first introduced in 2015.

Slovakia has expressed deep concern at the reported use of cluster munitions in different parts of the world and called on all actors to refrain from such use.[7] Slovakia has voted in favor of UNGA and UN Human Rights Council (HRC) resolutions condemning the use of cluster munitions in Syria, most recently in March 2019.[8]

Slovakia has not elaborated its views on certain important issues related to the convention’s interpretation and implementation, such as the prohibitions on transit, assistance during joint military operations with states not party that may use cluster munitions, foreign stockpiling of cluster munitions, investment in production of cluster munitions, and on the retention of cluster munitions for training and development purposes.

Slovakia is a State Party to the Mine Ban Treaty. It is also a party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW).


Before acceding to the convention, Slovakia stated several times that it never used cluster munitions.[9]

Production and transfer

Slovakia produced, exported, and imported cluster munitions in the past. In January 2014, it said it no longer produces cluster munitions and committed to no further production, while it disclosed in May 2010 its decision to not acquire cluster munitions anymore.[10]

ZVS Holding of Dubncia and Vahom was the country’s only producer of cluster munitions according to Slovakia’s action plan for accession to the convention.[11] The company manufactured two types of ground-fired cluster munitions.[12] Slovakia reported in June 2016 that the cluster munitions production line by the ZVS Holding Company was converted in 2010 to produce unitary munitions.[13]

Slovakia last exported cluster munitions in February 2010. ZVS Holding produced 8,680 122mm AGAT rockets for sale to Turkey and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in 1998–2010, and 602 cluster munitions for Slovakia’s Ministry of Defense in 1998–2001.[14]

In the past, Slovakia imported M26 rockets from Germany.[15]

Stockpiling and destruction

Slovakia once possessed a stockpile of 1,235 cluster munitions and 299,187 submunitions, as shown in the following table. All cluster munitions have been withdrawn from operational stocks.

Cluster munitions once stockpiled by Slovakia[16]


Quantity of cluster munitions

Quantity of submunitions

M26 rocket, each containing 644 M77 DPICM submunitions



JRKK-G AGAT projectile, each containing 50 dual purpose and 6 incendiary submunitions



JRKK-G AGAT rocket, each containing 50 dual purpose and 6 incendiary submunitions



BKF cartridge with 12 PTAB-2.5 submunitions



BKF cartridge with 12 AO-2.5RT submunitions



RBK-250 PTAB 2.5, each containing 42 PTAB 2.5 submunitions



RBK-500-255 PTAB-10.5A bomb, each containing 30 PTAB-10.5A submunitions



RBK-500-375 AO-10 bomb, each containing 30 AO-10 submunitions



RBK-500 AO-2.5 bomb, each containing 60 AO-2.5 submunitions



RBK-500 AO-2.5RT bomb, each containing 30 AO-2.5 submunitions



ZAB-2.5P incendiary submunitions



ZAB-2.5T incendiary submunitions



PTAB-2.5 submunitions



AO-2.5 submunitions



AO-10 submunitions







Stockpile destruction

Under Article 3 of the Convention on Cluster Munitions, Slovakia is required to destroy all stockpiled cluster munitions under its jurisdiction or control as soon as possible, but no later than 1 January 2024.

Slovakia has committed to destroy the stockpile “using its own capacities” and “fulfill all the requirements of the Convention within the given timeframe.”[17] The 2014 action plan identified 2023 as the year to complete destruction of the stockpile.[18]

As of 31 December 2018, Slovakia has destroyed a total of 643 cluster munitions and 33,398 submunitions, as listed in the following table. This represents more than half of its total declared holdings of cluster munitions and 11% of the submunitions.

Cluster munitions destroyed by Slovakia[19]

Year destroyed

Cluster munitions











Before entry into force (2013–2015)







Slovakia destroyed 163 cluster munitions and 11,666 submunitions before the convention’s entry into force for the country on 1 January 2016 and 480 cluster munitions and 21,732 submunitions in the period since then, including 226 cluster munitions and 12,688 submunitions in 2018.

Cluster munitions destroyed by Slovakia in 2018[20]


Quantity of cluster munitions (submunitions)

JRKK-G AGAT rocket


JRKK-G AGAT projectile

174 (9,744)

RBK-500-255 PTAB-10.5A bomb

4 (120)

RBK-500-375 AO-10 bomb

3 (90)

RBK-500 AO-2.5RT bomb

3 (180)

RBK-250 PTAB-2.5M bomb

6 (294)







ZAB-2.5T submunitions


ZAB-2.5P submunitions


KMGU dispenser and BFK PTAB-2.5 cartridge

18 (216)

KMGU dispenser and BKF AO-2.5 RT cartridge

18 (216)


226 (12,688)


Slovakia is destroying the stockpile by open detonation at the Novarky explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) training area and Kuchyna firing range. It has provided a technical data sheet with its transparency report detailing the destruction process.

In June 2017, Slovakia estimated the cost to destroy the stockpiled cluster munitions at €100,000 (€30,000 for the development of destruction techniques and €70,000 to destroy the stockpile). The 2014 action plan estimated the cost for stockpile destruction and related accession costs at €5.5 million (US$6.2 million).[21]


Slovakia has retained five M26 rockets and 3,220 M77 DPICM submunitions for the development of stockpile destruction techniques at the Zahorie Military Technical and Testing Institute. In June 2016, it reported that one M26 rocket was destroyed in the course of developing “render safe procedures and testing of the environmental impact of destruction.”[22] Initially, in 2015, Slovakia informed States Parties that it, “does not intend to keep any submunitions and we plan to destroy all our stockpiles.”[23]

However, in 2017, Slovakia told States Parties about “technical difficulties concerning environmental impacts” involved in the destruction process for its MLRS M26 rocket launchers. Slovakia said it was working to find “viable solutions and…international assistance” to complete its destruction of the rockets.[24]

[1] Act No. 392/2011 Coll. and Act No. 300/2005 Coll. as Amended. Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form A, 28 June 2016.

[2] The time period covered by the initial report is described as “initial,” while the April 2017 report covers activities from 1 July to 31 December 2016, the April 2018 report covers activities from 1 January to 31 December 2017, and the April 2019 report covers activities from 1 January to 31 December 2018.

[3] For more details on Slovakia’s cluster munition policy and practice through early 2009, see Human Rights Watch and Landmine Action, Banning Cluster Munitions: Government Policy and Practice (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada, May 2009), pp. 239–242. In 2011, Wikileaks released three United States (US) diplomatic cables from the period January 2007 and May 2008 that show the US consulted regularly with Slovakian government officials during the Oslo Process. See, for example, “Cluster munitions are not landmines,” US Department of State cable 07BRATISLAVA41 dated 22 January 2007, released by Wikileaks on 1 September 2011. “Draft Action Plan for the Implementation of the Commitments of the Slovak Republic under the Convention on Cluster Munitions,” attached to Letter No. 590.736/2014-OKOZ, from Miroslav Lajčák, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, to Sarah Blakemore, Cluster Munition Coalition (CMC), 25 April 2014.

[4] On 6 November 2008, the Slovak government adopted a decree, No. 810/2008, on the “analysis of the Convention on Cluster Munitions and proposal for further action.” The decree required the Ministry of Defense, in cooperation with the Ministry of Economy and the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, to develop an action plan aimed at a gradual process leading to the fulfillment of obligations under the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

[5] Slovakia participated in the convention’s Meetings of States Parties in 2011 and 2012, as well as intersessional meetings in Geneva in 2015.

[6]Implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions,” UNGA Resolution 38/16, 6 July 2018 .

[7] Statement of Slovakia, UNGA First Committee on Disarmament and International Security, New York, 26 October 2015.

[8]Situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic,” UNGA Resolution 72/191, 19 December 2017. Slovakia voted in favor of similar resolutions in 2014–2016. See also, “The human rights situation in the Syrian Arab Republic,” HRC Resolution 40/17, 22 March 2019.

[9] In April 2014, the deputy prime minister stated that “the Ministry of Defense of Slovakia has already banned the use of cluster munitions by the Slovak army.” Letter No. 590.736/2014-OKOZ, from Miroslav Lajčák, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, to Sarah Blakemore, CMC, 25 April 2014. In 2009, the minister of defense stated that cluster munitions are not in service with Slovak troops deployed in military operations outside the territory of the Slovak Republic. Letter from Jaroslav Baška, Minister of Defense, 16 June 2009.

[10] In May 2010, Slovakia announced that its armed forces have “adopted a new policy of not purchasing cluster munitions.” The Minister of Defense confirmed in June 2010 that the “purchase of additional cluster munitions for the Armed Forces of the Slovak Republic is not expected.” Slovakia, “Position paper on the Cluster Munitions,” provided to the CMC by the Embassy of the Slovak Republic to the UK, London, 25 May 2010.

[11] Cluster Munition Monitor previously listed Slovakian company Technopol International as involved in the production of the AGAT 122mm cargo ammunition, but its relationship to ZVS Holding is unclear. In June 2011, a Technopol representative informed the Monitor that the company advertised the 122mm AGAT rocket for export and had produced and exported the weapon “many times” during the past decade. Telephone interview with Bajca Dusan, Director, Technopol, 13 June 2011. However, by July 2013, Technopol’s website no longer listed the 122mm AGAT rocket.

[12] The 152mm artillery projectile containing dual-purpose improved conventional munition (DPICM) type submunitions with a self-destructing capability and the 122mm “AGAT” rocket containing 50 dual-purpose and six incendiary submunitions. Both types of submunition can self-destruct. Terry J. Gander and Charles Q. Cutshaw, eds., Jane’s Ammunition Handbook 2001–2002 (Surrey, UK: Jane’s Information Group Limited 2001), pp. 321 & 627. At some point, ZVS Holding apparently also offered a 98mm K-PT mortar projectile containing self-destructing DPICM-type submunition.

[14] According to the note, anticipated exports to Cyprus, Poland, Turkey, and the UAE were not concluded. The most extensive negotiations were apparently with the Turkish firm ROKETSAN, which supplies the Turkish army. In 2011, a contract was prepared to produce 8,000 AGAT cluster munition rockets at a cost of €25.6 million, but Turkish Ministry of Defense did not sign-off on it, apparently due to financial reasons.

[15] In 2004, Germany transferred 270 M26 rockets and transferred another 132 in 2005. Submission of Germany, UN Register of Conventional Arms, Report for Calendar Year 2004, 26 May 2005; and Report for Calendar Year 2005, 1 June 2006. In February 2009, the Slovak Ministry of Defense reportedly cancelled further orders of M26 rockets. “Slovak Defense Ministry cancels orders for cluster munitions,” Zibb, 3 February 2009. The original source cited is the Slovak News Agency (SITA) website, Bratislava, BBC Monitoring.

[16] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, 28 June 2016. The stockpile detailed in the 2016 transparency report was an increase from the 899 cluster munitions that Slovakia initially indicated it stockpiled in 2014. At the time, Slovakia reported a stockpile of 602 AGAT rockets, 67 M26 rockets, 95 RBK-series bombs, and 135 KMGU dispensers. See, explanatory note, “Draft Action Plan for the Implementation of the Commitments of the Slovak Republic under the Convention on Cluster Munitions,” undated.

[17] Letter No. 590.7564/2015-OKOZ, from Karol Mistrik, Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic, to Mary Wareham, Human Rights Watch, 16 April 2015.

[19] These numbers are come from Slovakia’s Article 7 transparency reports.

[20] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B.2 and B.3, 30 April 2019, revised version submitted 31 July 2019. Received by the Monitor via email from Miroslav Gutten, Second Secretary, Permanent Mission of Slovakia to the UN in Geneva, 1 August 2019.

[23] Statement of Slovakia, Convention on Cluster Munitions First Review Conference, Dubrovnik, 7 September 2015.

[24] Statement of Slovakia, Convention on Cluster Munitions Seventh Meeting of State Parties, Geneva, 4 September 2017.