North Korea continues to produce, stockpile cluster bombs: Report

The Cluster Munition Coalition said it has yet to confirm if North Korea has used cluster munitions.
The Cluster Munition Coalition said it has yet to confirm if North Korea has used cluster munitions. PHOTO: REUTERS

SEOUL - North Korea continues to produce and stockpile cluster munitions, a weapon outlawed by most of the world, a United States government-funded radio station reported on Friday (Aug 31), citing an international watchdog's annual report, Yonhap news agency reported.

The non-governmental Cluster Munition Coalition released the report at the United Nations in Geneva on Thursday, according to Radio Free Asia.

Cluster munitions are fired by artillery and rockets or dropped by aircraft, and open in the air to release multiple smaller bomblets or submunitions over an area the size of a football field.

The Convention on Cluster Munitions, which went into force in 2008, bans the use, production and trade of cluster munitions and obliges states to compensate victims.

Soviet-made cluster munitions flowed into at least 36 countries after the breakup of the Soviet Union, through which North Korea obtained and stockpiled them, the report said.

But the coalition said it has yet to confirm whether the North has used cluster munitions. The report will be submitted to a conference of the international convention banning cluster munitions, which will be held in Geneva from Monday through Wednesday, Yonhap reported.