Peru has acknowledged the harm caused by the use of EWIPA and committed to action on the issue.
Peru endorsed the joint statement on EWIPA during 73th UN General Assembly First Committee in October 2018. The statement, delivered by Ireland, called 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. Peru also endorsed the joint statement on EWIPA during the 74th UN General Assembly First Committee in October 2019. The statement, also delivered by Ireland, 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.
The Community of Latin American and Caribbean states (CELAC), of which Peru is a member, drew attention to the harm of weapons such as cluster munitions and antipersonnel mines on civilian populations in a statement to the UN General Assembly First Commission in October 2018. The statement emphasised that the use of these weapons is in clear violation with international humanitarian law (IHL) and called on all states to take immediate measures to ameliorate the humanitarian harms which they cause.
During the UN Security Council Open Debate on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict in May 2019, Peru recalled the damage caused by EIPA, and called for improving compliance with international humanitarian law (IHL).
Along with 22 other Latin American and Caribbean states, Peru participated in the Santiago Regional Meeting on Protecting Civilians from the Use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas in 2018. The meeting produced the Santiago Communiqué in which the participating states agreed to take further action on the issue, including, but not limited to, the following:
- “Encourage collection of data and information to increase awareness and enhance knowledge about the impact of explosive weapons on civilians in populated areas;
- Avoid the use of explosive weapons with wide area effects in populated areas;
- Act to enhance compliance with international humanitarian and human rights law to ensure the protection of civilians and civilian objects, including school and hospitals during armed conflict and to contribute to alleviating humanitarian harm resulting from the effects of explosive weapons in populated areas
- Develop effective measures to prevent attacks in contravention of applicable international law against hospitals and schools and protected persons in relation to them;
- Fully support the process that will lead to the negotiation and adoption of an international political declaration on the use of explosive weapons in populated areas;
- Promote bilateral and regional cooperation through sharing experiences, good practices and expertise on reducing the harm caused by explosive weapons to civilians;
- Constructively engage in discussions and initiatives at international level that could effectively provide greater protection to civilians in armed conflicts;
- Foster deeper and further engagement from the Latin American and Caribbean states and facilitate increased involvement as a group of States;
- Continue and strengthen cooperation and partnerships with international organizations and civil society organizations to draw upon their relevant expertise and support;
- Channel contributions to the draft international political declaration on the matter, as well as engage in advocacy, at national, regional and international levels.”
Peru participated at the Conference on the Protection of Civilians in Urban Warfare in October 2019 in Vienna.
Peru participated in the first round of consultations for a political declaration on the use of EWIPA in Geneva in 2019. It issued a statement urging the declaration to include “a recognition and description of direct and indirect consequences of the use of EWIPA.” It also noted that avoiding the use of EWIPA would contribute to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 16.
In addition, Peru supported a call for the adoption and review of policies and practices to enhance protection of civilians and compliance with IHL. In its words: “Stress the importance, in all circumstances, of full respect for the International Humanitarian Law (IHL) when there are
hostilities in populated areas, in particular the prohibitions of indiscriminate and disproportionate attacks, and the obligation to take all feasible precautions in attack.” It also called for data collection to be gender-disaggregated, and for the declaration to recognise the rights of victims and affected communities and to provide appropriate victim assistance to those affected.
During the second round of consultations in Geneva in 2020, Peru said the objective of improving military practice should be to prevent the use of EWIPA, and that the language of paragraph 4.3 could be strengthened to ensure that every victim of an explosive weapon gets assistance and enjoys full exercise of their rights.
In the round of consultations that took place in 2021, Peru raised the following points:
- It opposed qualifiers throughout the text, including but not limited to 1.2, 1.3, 1.8, where humanitarian impacts are described, as well as the chapeau for Section 3.
- Peru agreed that WAE should be deleted in 2.2.
- Peru underscored that the application of IHL is the minimum and that civilian harm can also arise from lawful attacks.
- Peru echoed Mexico’s calling for strengthening Section 2, in particular by starting 2.1 by “reaffirming” states’ obligations under existing law.
- Peru stressed the imperative of a clear commitment in 3.3 that would meaningfully improve the protection of civilians from the grave harms caused by the use of EWIPA.
- Peru echoed New Zealand’s suggestion that the phrase “when the effects may be expected to extend beyond a military objective” is unhelpful, highlighting that the inclusion of the phrase “with wide area effects” already covers the substantive concern.
- Peru echoed Mexico’s argument, adding that 3.3 as it stands is weak and serves to undermine the central purpose of the declaration. Specifically, Peru argued for a presumption of non-use of EWIPA and for replacing “restrict” with “avoid.”
- Most of those welcoming gender references called for a separate para on the gender dimension of EWIPA, including Peru.
- Several participants, including Peru, recommended highlighting regional and similar efforts to address this issue, including the Maputo and Santiago communiqués, the 2019 Vienna Conference on Protecting Civilians, and recent EWIPA-focused seminars hosted by Germany.
- Peru and others called for an open, transparent, and inclusive follow-up process.
- Peru also requested greater specificity regarding the follow-up process, and urged that the declaration specify the schedule of meetings (i.e. “annually” or “biennially” rather than simply “regularly”).
In the Preparatory Committee of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW) held on September 2021, Peru welcomed the development of a political declaration on the use of EWIPA.
 Permanent Mission of Ireland to the United Nations (2018). ‘UNGA73 First Committee Joint Statement on Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas (EWIPA)’. https://reachingcriticalwill.org/images/documents/Disarmament-fora/1com/1com18/statements/25Oct_EWIPA.pdf.
 INEW (2019). ‘Seventy-one States call for Action on Impact of Explosive Weapons in Joint Statement to UN General Assembly’. https://www.inew.org/seventy-one-states-call-for-action-on-impact-of-explosive-weapons-in-joint-statement-to-un-general-assembly/.
 Permanent Mission of Ireland to the United Nations (2019). ‘UNGA74 First Committee Debate on Conventional Weapons: Joint Statement on Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas Delivered by H.E. Ambassador Geraldine Byrne Nason Permanent Representative of Ireland to the United Nations, 2019, https://article36.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/UNGA74-joint-statement-on-explosive-weapons-in-populated-areas.pdf.
 CELAC (2018). ‘UNGA73 First Committee Statement’. https://reachingcriticalwill.org/images/documents/Disarmament-fora/1com/1com18/statements/10Oct_CELAC.pdf.
 UN Security Council (2019). ‘UN Security Council Open Debate on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict in May 2019’. https://undocs.org/en/S/PV.8534.
 INEW (2018). ‘Santiago Communiqué’. https://www.inew.org/communique-from-regional-meeting-on-protecting-civilians-from-the-use-of-explosive-weapons-in-populated-areas-santiago-chile/.
 INEW (2019). ‘Vienna Conference Marks Turning Point as States Support Negotiation of an International Political Declaration on Explosive Weapons’. https://www.inew.org/vienna-conference-marks-turning-point-as-states-support-negotiation-of-an-international-political-declaration-on-explosive-weapons/.
 Reaching Critical Will (2019). ‘Towards a Political Declaration on the Use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas: States Need to Ensure that Expressed Commitments Translate Into Real Impacts on the Ground’. https://reachingcriticalwill.org/news/latest-news/14451-towards-a-political-declaration-on-the-use-of-explosive-weapons-in-populated-areas-states-need-to-ensure-that-expressed-commitments-translate-into-real-impacts-on-the-ground.
 Permanent Mission of Peru to the United Nations (2019). ‘Statement’. https://reachingcriticalwill.org/images/documents/Disarmament-fora/ewipa/declaration/statements/18Nov_Peru.pdf.
 Ray Acheson, Reaching Critical Will (2020). ‘Impacts, not Intentionality: The Imperative of Focusing on the Effects of Explosive Weapons in a Political Declaration’. https://reachingcriticalwill.org/news/latest-news/14658-impacts-not-intentionality-the-imperative-of-focusing-on-the-effects-of-explosive-weapons-in-a-political-declaration.
 Ray Acheson, Reaching Critical Will (2021). ‘Report on the March 2021 Consultations on a Political Declaration on the Use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas’. https://reachingcriticalwill.org/news/latest-news/15213-report-on-the-march-2021-consultations-on-a-political-declaration-on-the-use-of-explosive-weapons-in-populated-areas.
 Reaching Critical Will (2021). ‘CCW Report Vol.9 No.5’. https://reachingcriticalwill.org/images/documents/Disarmament-fora/ccw/2021/prepcom/reports/CCWR9.5.pdf