Explosive weapons in populated areas, where civilians pay the price (April 2019)

The bombing and shelling of towns and cities continues to be a key cause of death and destruction in conflicts around the world. Recent events in Ukraine, Yemen and Syria show the urgency to address the humanitarian harm caused when explosive weapons, and especially those with wide area effects, are used in towns and cities.

As a founding member of the International Network on Explosive Weapons (INEW), PAX works to reduce harm caused by explosive weapons in populated areas (EWIPA) and enhance transparency about the consequences of such use, including the impact on the civilian population.Often, collateral damage from the use of explosive weapons in populated areas is seen as an unfortunate yet ‘normal’ or inevitable consequence of war. We must challenge this. This PAX policy paper briefly describes the humanitarian problem and suggests ways to prevent the predictable civilian harm caused by the use of explosive weapons in populated areas.

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