To ban cluster bombs

Over the past 40 years cluster bombs have left a consistent trail of death and destruction both during conflicts - where they saturate wide areas with deadly shrapnel and explosives - and after conflicts - when they leave large numbers of unexploded bombs waiting to kill and injure and disrupting daily lives and livelihoods.

Hundreds of organisations and individuals worldwide are working together to promote a new international treaty that will prohibit cluster munitions and provide assistance to survivors and their families and communities. Because of the work of these organisations and individuals and the commitment of a number of progressive governments, 94 governments signed a comprehensive ban in Oslo in December 2008.

Once states ratify the treaty and it enters into force it will be the most significant international disarmament and humanitarian treaty of the past decade. Global civil society is playing a crucial and integral role in delivering this real solution.

The voices of ordinary people around the world have made this achievement possible. By continuing to make local voices heard together globally we can ensure the success of this historic treaty. We are also sending a message to decision makers that people can change the world and, with a bit of organisation, people can control the levers of power and make real democracy happen.

You can be involved in this campaign and have an impact by taking quick and easy actions in your country to influence government policy.

There is a real - and rare - chance now for you to make your voice heard and, by doing so, to make an important difference to the lives of the most vulnerable - people affected by conflict.

See www.stopclusterbombs.org for more information and to find out about what you can do in your country.

1. States should sign and ratify the international treaty banning cluster bombs.

2. Governments should take concrete and measurable actions to support individuals and communities affected by cluster munitions.

3. Individuals and civil society can and must take action to promote change in favour of human security and to reduce armed violence.