Washington wants to supply cluster munitions to Q and Europe remains indifferent: “The German position is still reasonable, but…”

Amid total silence in Europe, Russia, the United Nations and human rights organizations on Friday criticized the US decision to supply Ukraine with cluster munitions. The weapons are part of a new $800 million US military aid package. “Delivered in due time for counter-attack” Ukrainian, according to a Pentagon official. A fortnight ago, voices in favor of these weapons began to be heard within the Defense Ministry, regarding their potential usefulness in a counteroffensive by Ukrainian forces to repel the Russian army.

For Moscow, Washington’s decision to supply Ukraine with cluster bombs represents an “admission of weakness” that would make the United States “complicit” in civilian deaths caused by the controversial weapon. “The transfer of cluster munitions is a gesture of desperation and an admission of weakness in the wake of the failure of the so-called Ukrainian counteroffensive,” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.

Moscow and Kiev use it

In May, Human Rights Watch accused Russia and Ukraine, which, like the United States, are not signatories to the Convention on Cluster Munitions, which have caused civilian deaths since the invasion of Ukraine began in February 2022. .

Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, not known for his nuanced views, accused the United States of trying to provoke him. “Nuclear Armageddon”. The current deputy chairman of the Russian National Security Council felt that the dual promise to supply these weapons and Ukraine’s accession to NATO showed that the tenant of the White House had exhausted all other resources. These actions risk igniting World War III.

Ethical debate

Ratified by 111 countries Conference on Cluster Munitions, concluded in 2008 and entered into force in 2010, bans the production, possession, use and transfer of such weapons. These weapons are particularly condemned for the wide spread of small explosives they contain and the risk of exposing civilians, including after the conflicts in which they are used.

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German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, for his part, has found a unique formula to sum up the debate opposing ethics and pragmatism regarding Washington’s willingness to supply Kiev with these controversial weapons. “The German position against cluster bombs is still justified. But in the current situation, we cannot stop America.”He said in an interview with German television ZDF. “If Ukraine no longer has the means to defend itself, or those who help defend it no longer do so, that is the end of Ukraine.”Justified M.Steinmeier, powers are essentially representative and formal.

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