Holy See Denounces Use of Cluster Bombs

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GENEVA, JUNE 26, 2007 (Zenit.org).- The Holy See is appealing to the international community to adopt measures that will put an end to the bloodshed caused by cluster bombs.



Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Holy See's permanent observer to the U.N. offices in Geneva, made that appeal during a June 19 speech at the Convention on Conventional Weapons.

The conference considered ways to prohibit or at least limit the use of weaponry such as landmines, incendiary weapons and blinding laser devices, which cause excessive injury or have indiscriminate effects.

The Holy See launched an appeal to unite forces and "adopt an ambitious attitude in order to resolve the problems of cluster bombs once and for all."

"It is understandable that, unable to find an immediate solution, we should think in terms of a period of transition to reach the goal of total prohibition," Archbishop Tomasi said.

The 66-year-old archbishop explained that the proposal is not based on economic or military factors, but on "the recognition of the fundamental value of human dignity, which must be the principal aspect of the process of trying to strengthen international humanitarian law."

An estimated 70 countries have a stockpile of cluster bombs.