United Arab Emirates

Cluster Munition Ban Policy

Last updated: 13 September 2021


The UAE has never elaborated its views on cluster munitions or commented on its position on joining the convention. It last participated in a meeting of the convention in September 2019. The UAE abstained from the vote on a key United Nations (UN) resolution promoting the convention in December 2020.

The UAE is not known to have produced cluster munitions, but it has imported them, possesses a stockpile, and may have used cluster munitions.


The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has not acceded to the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

The UAE has never made a public statement elaborating its views on cluster munitions or its position on joining the convention.[1]

The UAE did not participate in the Oslo Process that created the convention.

The UAE has participated as an observer in meetings of the convention, most recently at the Ninth Meeting of States Parties in Geneva in September 2019, where it did not provide a statement.[2] It was invited to, but did not attend the first part of the convention’s Second Review Conference held virtually in November 2020.

In December 2020, the UAE abstained from voting on a UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolution that urged states outside the Convention on Cluster Munitions “to join as soon as possible.”[3] The UAE has abstained from voting on the annual UNGA resolution promoting the convention since it was first introduced in 2015.

The UAE has voted in favor of UNGA resolutions expressing outrage at the use of cluster munitions in Syria, most recently in December 2020.[4]

The UAE is not a party to the Mine Ban Treaty. It is party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW).

Production, transfer, and stockpiling

The UAE is not known to have produced or exported cluster munitions.

The UAE imported cluster munitions and possesses a stockpile of ground-fired cluster munition rockets and missiles as well as air-delivered bombs from the United States (US), as well as from Turkey and the United Kingdom (UK).

The UAE purchased an unknown number of CBU-105 Sensor Fuzed Weapons from the US in 2010.[5] Following US sales announced in 2006, the UAE received 101 M39A1 ATACMS missiles (each containing 300 M74 submunitions), 104 M26 multiple launch rocket system (MLRS) rocket pods (each pod contains six rockets, while each rocket contains 644 M77 dual-purpose improved conventional munition [DPICM] submunitions), and 130 M30 GMLRS DPICM rocket pods.[6] The UAE received 1,800 CBU-87 bombs (each containing 202 BLU-97 submunitions) from the US in 1999.[7] The UAE also received 3,020 TRK-122 122mm unguided cluster munition rockets, each containing 56 M85 DPICM submunitions, from Turkey in 2006–2007.[8]

According to Jane’s Information Group, the UAE Air Force possesses British-made BL755 bombs and has received Hydra-70 air-to-surface rockets. However, it is not known if they include the M261 multipurpose submunition variant.[9] The UAE is also reported to possess Soviet-made 122mm Type-90 and 300mm Smerch surface-to-surface rockets, but it is not known if they contain submunition payloads.[10]

During the IDEX international military trade fair held in Abu Dhabi in February 2017, defence companies from Egypt and Russia advertised cluster munitions for sale.[11]


In 2011, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs official told the Monitor that the UAE has never used or produced cluster munitions.[12]

The UAE participated in a Saudi Arabia-led joint military operation in Yemen against Houthi forces, also known as Ansar Allah, which used cluster munitions in 2015–2017.

[1] Officials from the UAE have commented favorably on the convention during meetings with campaigners. In 2001, a UAE representative expressed support for the humanitarian aspects of the convention and said the government was studying its position on accession. Interview with Amb. Faris Mohammed al-Mazroui, Assistant for Security and Military Affairs, UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in Beirut, 15 September 2011.

[2] The UAE also participated as an observer in Meetings of States Parties held in 2011 and 2017–2019.

[3]Implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions”, UNGA Resolution 75/62, 7 December 2020.

[4]Situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic,” UNGA Resolution 75/193, 16 December 2020. The UAE voted in favor of similar resolutions from 2013–2019.

[5] The contract for the sale was signed in November 2007. Textron Inc., “Q2 2010 Earnings Call,” 21 July 2010; and Textron Defense Systems press release, “Textron Defense Systems and UAE Armed Forces Sign Sensor Fuzed Weapon Contract,” 13 November 2007. Also, the US Congress was notified in June 2007 of a proposed commercial sale of “technical data, defense services, and defense articles to support the sale of the Sensor Fuzed Weapons” to the UAE. Jeffrey T. Bergner, Assistant Secretary for Legislative Affairs, US Department of State, to Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Transmittal No. DDTC 017-07, 7 June 2007.

[6] US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), “News Release: United Arab Emirates - High Mobility Artillery Rocket System,” Transmittal No. 06-55, 21 September 2006.

[7] US DSCA, “Notifications to Congress of Pending US Arms Transfers,” November 1999.

[8] Turkey, UN Register of Conventional Arms, submission for Calendar Year 2006 (22 March 2007), and submission for Calendar Year 2007 (7 July 2008).

[9] Robert Hewson, ed., Jane’s Air-Launched Weapons, Issue 44 (Surrey: Jane’s Information Group Limited, 2004), p. 847; and Colin King, ed., Jane’s Explosive Ordnance Disposal, CD-edition, 14 December 2007 (Surrey: Jane’s Information Group Limited, 2008).

[10] International Institute for Strategic Studies, The Military Balance 2011 (London: Routledge, 2011), p. 334.

[11] See Egypt and Russia’s Cluster Munition Monitor profiles for details.

[12] Interview with Amb. al-Mazroui, UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in Beirut, 15 September 2011.

Mine Ban Policy

Last updated: 16 October 2020


The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has not acceded to the Mine Ban Treaty, although it has, on occasion, expressed interest in joining. In November 2007, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs official told the ICBL that the UAE planned to join the treaty in the near future.[1]

The UAE attended, as an observer, the convention’s Fourth Review Conference in Oslo, Norway in November 2019, but did not make any statements. The UAE last sent observers to a Meeting of States Parties in December 2012. The UAE has never submitted a voluntary Article 7 report.

The UAE voted in favor of annual United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) Resolution 74/61 in December 2019, calling for universalization and full implementation of the Mine Ban Treaty, as it has done for all previous pro-ban resolutions since 1996.[2]

The UAE is party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) and has adopted CCW Protocol V on explosive remnants of war, but not Amended Protocol II on landmines. The UAE is not party to the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

Use, production, transfer, and stockpiling

The UAE has stated that it has not produced, used, or exported antipersonnel mines.[3] While some officials have said that the UAE does not have a stockpile of antipersonnel mines, the Monitor has received conflicting information from another governmental source.[4]

[1] Interview with Abdallah al-Naqbi, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mine Ban Treaty Eighth Meeting of States Parties, at the Dead Sea, Jordan, 22 November 2007.

[2] “Implementation of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction,” UN General Assembly (UNGA) Resolution 74/61, 12 December 2019.

[3] Interview with Abdallah al-Naqbi, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mine Ban Treaty Eighth Meeting of States Parties, at the Dead Sea, Jordan, 22 November 2007.

[4] The Secretary of Defense stated in September 2004 there were no stockpiles. Email from Amb. Satnam Jit Singh, Diplomatic Advisor, ICBL, 7 October 2004. This was also claimed in a presentation by Ali al-Hosni, UAE military officer, at the Workshop on the Risks of Landmines and Explosive Remnants of War (ERW), Sharjah, 8–9 December 2003, organized by the Arab Network for Research on Landmines and ERW. In 2006, an official who asked not to be identified told the ICBL that there were some stockpiles of antipersonnel mines.

Support for Mine Action

Last updated: 30 October 2013

In September 2011, in its continuing support for the reconstruction of Afghanistan that began in 1997, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) committed US$25.83 million[1] to mine action to conduct community-based mine action services in Kandahar province. The UAE selected the United States-based company EOD Technology (EODT) to implement the project.[2]In 2012 EODT merged with Sterling Global Operations.[3]

The first installment, paid in late 2011, was for $1,999,975.[4] In 2012, the UAE allocated $13,397,300 to EODT to continue clearance operations in Kandahar province.[5]


[1] Mine Action Coordination Centre of Afghanistan (MACCA) website, “MACCA Fast Facts: March 2012.”

[2] EODT, “News,” 12 December 2011.

[4] Email from Eugen Secareanu, Resource Mobilisation Assistant, Resource Mobilisation Unit, UN Mine Action Service, 30 May 2012.

[5] MACCA website “MACCA Fast Facts: December 2012.”