Cluster Munitions — Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 11:07 am on 10th November 2011.

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Photo of Lord Howell of Guildford Lord Howell of Guildford Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (International Energy Policy) 11:07 am, 10th November 2011

The noble Lord made a number of points. The antique cluster weapons are of course often the nastiest, particularly if they are used, so banning them is no bad thing. As for the negotiation over the protocol, obviously we will take into account the points that the noble Lord has made. However, perhaps he should take into account the point that 85 to 90 per cent of all cluster weapons are with non-Oslo state parties and so are left out of the present commitment, to which we ourselves are totally committed. If his advice is that we should ignore that situation, that sounds to me like a direct attack on a humanitarian benefit that we might achieve. I wonder if he would not like to reconsider his position.