Graphics: Appeal to the G7 Hiroshima Summit 2023
by the Citizens’ Network Opposing the Use of DU Weapons in Ukraine
Organisers/supporters: International Coalition to Ban Uranium Weapons (ICUBW), International Peace Bureau (IPB, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW, International Association of Lawyers Against Nuclear War (IALANA)
Presentation (June 16, 2023):
Prof. Manfred Mohr, ICBUW, Co Spokesperson (Germany)
DU Weapons: the political and legal framework –
Uranwaffen: Der politische und rechtliche Rahmen (deutsche Fassung)
Ria Verjauw, ICBUW, Co Spokesperson (Belgium)
DU: International awareness, activities, campaigning –
Internationale Wahrnehmung, Aktivitäten, Kampagnenarbeit (deutsche Fassung)
Angelika Claussen, IPPNW, Co Chair;
DU: The humanitarian and health dimension –
Die humanitäre und gesundheitliche Dimension (deutsche Fassung)
Karl-Heinz Peil, Informationsdienst Umwelt und Militär
Reader: War in Ukraine: From environmental disaster to ecocide –
Von der Umweltkatastrophe zum Ökozid (deutsche Fassung)
Uranium weapons are not classified as nuclear weapons but as conventional weapons. They consist mainly of depleted uranium (DU), a radioactive and chemically toxic heavy metal.
As far as is known, these weapons have been definitively used by two states: the USA and Great Britain. Large quantities of DU were fired in Iraq and the Balkans. DU-weaponry is in the possession of many states.
When DU projectiles or penetrators hit armoured surfaces, they burn due to the high temperatures generated by the impact. This creates a very fine dust that is radioactive and chemically toxic. This toxic dust can be absorbed by the body through food and respiration, and is contaminating the environment.
On the current policy developments
The British government has started to deliver uranium munitions to Ukraine. For the Russian side, contradictory data exist, difficult to verify.
The use of DU ammunition in Ukraine would have devastating consequences – not so much for the current war, but as a long-term effect on people and the environment. (See appeal above/link ICBUW website)