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Bangladesh has acknowledged the harm caused by the use of explosive weapons in populated areas (EWIPA) and committed to action on the matter. 


During the February 2013 Security Council Debate on Children and Armed Conflict and the May 2017 UN Security Council Open Debate on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict, Bangladesh delivered statements condemning the use of EWIPA, particularly focusing on the devastating harm it causes to women and children.[1]

As a member of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, Bangladesh aligned with World Humanitarian Summit Core Commitments to ‘Uphold the Norms that Safeguard Humanity’ in May 2016, including the commitment “to promote and enhance the protection of civilians and civilian objects, especially in the conduct of hostilities, for instance by working to prevent civilian harm resulting from the use of wide-area explosive weapons in populated areas, and by sparing civilian infrastructure from military use in the conduct of military operations.”[2]

Bangladesh was also one of 50 states to endorse the joint statement on the use of EWIPA at the UN General Assembly First Committee in 2018, calling attention to the devastating and long-lasting humanitarian impact of the use of EWIPA and urging states to reverse the trend of high levels of civilian harm.[3] Bangladesh also endorsed the Ireland-led joint statement during the UN General Assembly First Committee in 2019.[4] The statement encouraged states to participate in international efforts to address the impacts of the use of EWIPA on civilians, including by working towards the creation of an international political declaration on this issue.[5]

Political declaration

During the General Debate of the UN General Assembly First Committee in 2018, Bangladesh called for the adoption of a political declaration to address EWIPA use and its humanitarian consequences.[6] Bangladesh discussed its expectations for a political declaration at the 2019 Vienna Conference on Protecting Civilians in Urban Warfare, emphasising that a declaration should comprise practical measures and procedures.[7] During the 2019 Vienna Conference, Bangladesh also said that in principle it agrees to participation in negotiating a political declaration; however, it has not yet delivered any statements at the consultation sessions for a political declaration on EWIPA.[8]

At the UN Security Council Open Debate “War in Cities: Protection of Civilians in Urban Settings” on 25 January 2022, the Group of Friends of the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict (of which Bangladesh is a member) called on states to enhance the protection of civilians, including from the use of EWIPA, and took note of the ongoing consultations to develop a political declaration on this subject.[9]


[1] Laura Boillot, Article 36 (2013). ‘Explosive Weapons Raised as Key Issue in Security Council Debate on Protection of Civilians’.

[2] Agenda for Humanity. ‘Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC)’.

[3] Permanent Mission of Ireland to the United Nations (2018). ‘UNGA73 First Committee Joint Statement on Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas (EWIPA)’.

[4] INEW (2019). ‘Seventy-one States Call for Action on Impact of Explosive Weapons in Joint Statement to UN General Assembly.’

[5] Permanent Mission of Ireland to the United Nations (2019). ‘UNGA74 First Committee Joint Statement on Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas (EWIPA)’.

[6] Permanent Mission of Bangladesh (2018). ‘UNGA73 First Committee Statement–Thematic Discussion on ”Conventional Weapons”’.

[7] Reaching Critical Will (2019). ‘States commit to take political action on explosive weapons at Vienna conference’.

[8] Ibid.; Reaching Critical Will (2021). ‘Statements from the political declaration process on explosive weapons in populated areas.’

[9] Ray Acheson, Reaching Critical Will (2022). ‘UN Security Council debates war in cities and the protection of civilians’.


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