UN First Committee sends clear message to depleted uranium users over transparency

Issued by ICBUW, 29 October 2010

The United Nations First Committee has voted, by an overwhelming margin, for state users of depleted uranium weapons to release data on where the weapons have been used to governments of states affected by their use.

136 states last night voted in favour of a resolution calling on state users of depleted uranium weapons to release quantitative and geographical data to the governments of affected states. The resolution will now go forward to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) for a second vote at the end of November.

Although UNGA resolutions are non-binding, they are a useful means of focusing attention on key issues. In this case the ongoing failure of the US to release data on its use of depleted uranium in Iraq and concerns over the use of the weapons in other conflicts, such as the interventions in Somalia in the mid-1990s. The resolution was submitted by Indonesia on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement.

The resolution was opposed by only four states – the US, UK, France and Israel. These four also voted against previous resolutions accepting that DU has the potential to damage human health (2007) and calling for more research in affected states (2008).

For a full rundown of the results visit: http://www.bandepleteduranium.org/en/a/348.html

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