Recommendations by Sweden at the High Contracting Parties to the Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May Be Deemed to Be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects (CCW)
Let me begin by congratulating you on your appointment as President of this Meeting of the High Contracting Parties. I can assure you of the full support from the Swedish delegation.
Sweden fully aligns itself with the statement by the European Union. I wish to add the following remarks in a national capacity.
Sweden remains committed to the CCW and its Protocols. We believe in the Convention’s capacity to balance security needs and humanitarian concerns. We urge all states who have not joined the Convention, or its Protocols, to do so without further delay.
Considering the humanitarian goals of the CCW, we cannot look away from Russia’s unjustifiable, unprovoked and illegal aggression against Ukraine. Sweden condemns Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, aided by the Belarusian regime, in the strongest possible terms. We are appalled by Russia’s use of anti-personnel mines and other explosive weapons in Ukraine, with devastating, long-lasting effects. We call on Russia to respect IHL and to immediately and unconditionally withdraw all its troops and military equipment from the entire territory of Ukraine within its internationally recognised borders.
Sweden believes that the CCW and its protocols are effective and relevant means to respond also to future weapons technology developments. Like others, Sweden welcomes a continued discussion on lethal autonomous weapons systems within the framework of the CCW. The topic is complex, but important progress has been made even if such progress has not been adequately reflected in this year’s report of the GGE. Sweden believes it is of utmost importance that the mandate of the GGE be renewed and that 20 meeting days be allocated for next year’s session to allow the GGE to continue its substantive and meaningful work.
We would like to reiterate the importance of ensuring the Convention’s financial stability. Important measures were agreed during the Sixth Review Conference last year, under skilful leadership of France. We look forward to their strict implementation.
Sweden is a firm champion of gender equality. We believe that by applying a gender perspective to arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation, we can improve our collective work and strengthen international peace and security.
Let me also underline the importance we attach to the work of the ICRC, as well as civil society organisations, and their valuable contributions to the CCW and our continued work.
Thank you, Mr President.