Is the use of cluster bombs a war crime?

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In Ukraine, such as human rights investigators AI And Bellingcat It has been Tracking Russian Attacks To help investigate possible war crimes. The only thing they pay special attention to are cluster bombs. Cluster bombs were first used in World War II, and they spread many small bombs over a wide area – Often kills civilians. It is this indiscriminate nature that makes its use so often a war crime.

Our modern concept of war crimes was established by a series of treaties that spanned decades. In 1977, one of those treaties banned what are known as “indiscriminate attacks”. This means that militaries are legally prohibited from inaccurately attacking an area in a way that could harm civilians.

Russia is not alone in using these weapons: in conflicts since the 1977 treaty, many armies continue to use them in civilian areas, with impunity, Including United State. This video explains how Russia uses it, and why only places like the US and Russia won’t give up on her.

This video is part of our ongoing and broader coverage of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. For more videos that provide historical context to today’s headlines, Watch our playlist here.

You can find this video, our playlist and library Vox videos on our YouTube channel.

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