Vladimir Putin says Russia has stockpiled cluster bombs and reserves right  to use them in Ukraine - The Hindu

In a concerning announcement, Russian President Vladimir Putin declared that Russia possesses a significant stockpile of cluster bombs and reserves the right to use them if these munitions are deployed against Russian forces in Ukraine. Cluster munitions, known for releasing numerous smaller bomblets upon detonation, are banned in over 100 countries due to their indiscriminate nature and potential harm to civilians.

While President Putin acknowledged that he views the use of cluster bombs as a crime, his statement regarding Russia’s stockpile raises alarm within the international community. The potential for their deployment in the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine amplifies concerns about civilian casualties and the impact on the region’s stability.

Recently, Ukraine claimed to have received cluster bombs from the United States, its primary military supporter. The intention behind this supply is said to compensate for shell shortages faced by Ukrainian forces during their counteroffensive. The introduction of such munitions into the conflict further complicates the already fragile situation.

The use of cluster munitions has long been a topic of intense debate and global condemnation due to their inherent dangers. The unexploded bomblets can pose a significant threat to civilians, even long after the initial conflict has ended. International efforts have been focused on banning and eliminating these weapons to protect civilian populations.

As tensions escalate in the region, it is imperative that all parties involved exercise restraint and prioritize the protection of innocent lives. The use of cluster bombs, given their indiscriminate nature, poses a severe risk to civilian populations and undermines efforts to achieve a peaceful resolution.

The international community, including organizations and nations committed to disarmament and the protection of human rights, must actively engage in dialogue to address the use of cluster munitions. It is essential to find diplomatic solutions that prioritize the safety and well-being of civilians while working towards de-escalation and long-term peace in the region.