Turkey supplying Ukraine with US-design cluster bombs since Nov. 2022
Ukrainian forces have been reportedly using cluster bombs since 2015 in battles against the republics of Lugansk and Donetsk.
Foreign Policy reported citing current and former US and EU officials that Turkey has been supplying Ukraine with US-designed artillery-fired cluster bombs since November 2022.
The Cold War-era dual-purpose improved conventional munitions (DPICMs), which the United States is barred from exporting under US law because of their high dud rate, gave Ukraine a controversial weapon in the conflict with Russia on the battlefield, the report said.
The bombs, which are designed to damage tanks by exploding into smaller submunitions, can stay on the battlefield for years if they do not explode instantly, with each round distributing approximately 88 bomblets.
“After the U.S. denied [Ukraine] access to cluster munitions, Turkey was the only place they could get them. It just shows how even as Turkey cozies up to Russia in some respects, it’s become a really important supporter for Ukraine militarily," a source briefed on the matter, who declined to be identified, said as quoted by Foreign Policy.
Ukrainian forces have been using cluster bombs since 2015 in battles against the republics of Lugansk and Donetsk. They fired such munitions on Donetsk on March 14, killing 20 people and wounding 37 others.
A report by The New York Times has recently revealed that Ukrainian troops fired cluster munitions, banned by 110 countries around the world, on a Ukrainian village.
The cluster bombs that the Ukrainian forces used against a village populated with civilians on their own territory are banned by countries around the world for their capacity to haphazardly kill innocent civilians, according to the Convention on Cluster Munitions. Almost 20% of these munitions fail to detonate on impact and remain a threat to civilians long after hostilities end, killing and maiming them indiscriminately.
Ukrainian forces have committed multiple war crimes in the form of deliberate attacks against civilian targets, massacres of civilians, torture of POWs, and indiscriminate attacks in densely populated areas.