The Laws of Armed Conflicts: A Collection of Conventions, Resolutions, and Other Documents

By Dietrich Schindler; Jiri Toman | Go to book overview

No. 18
CONVENTION ON THE PROHIBITION OF MILITARY
OR ANY OTHER HOSTILE USE OF ENVIRONMENTAL
MODIFICATION TECHNIQUES

Adopted by resolution 31/72 of the United Nations General Assembly on 10 December 1976

INTRODUCTORY NOTE: At the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment, held at Stockholm in 1972, the question of the use of environmental techniques for military purposes was hardly discussed. In 1974, the USSR submitted to the General Assembly of the United Nations a draft convention on the prohibition of the use of such techniques. The General Assembly hereupon requested the Conference of the Committee on Disarmament (CCD) to proceed as soon as possible to achieving agreement on the text of such a convention (resolution 3264 (XXLX) of 9 December 1974). Thereafter, the USSR and the USA submitted at the CCD identical drafts of a convention (see resolution 3475 (XXX) of 11 December 1975). After negotiations under the auspices of the CCD in which all thirty participating member states took part, the Conference transmitted the revised text to the United Nations General Assembly, together with a set of Understandings relating to Articles I, II, III and VIII of the Convention. (The Understandings are reproduced on pp. 168–169.)

The Convention was approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its resolution 31/72 of 10 December 1976. In application of paragraph 2 of the said resolution, the Secretary-General decided to open the Convention for signature and ratification by states from 18 to 31 May 1977 at Geneva. Subsequently, the Convention was transmitted to the Headquarters of the Organization of the United Nations, where it was open for signature by states until 4 October 1978. For further provisions relating to the protection of the natural environment in case of armed conflicts, see Protocol I additional to the Geneva Conventions (No. 56), Articles 35 (3) and 55, and Guidelines on the Protection of the Environment in Times of Armed Conflict (No. 23A).

ENTRY INTO FORCE: 5 October 1978.

AUTHENTIC TEXT: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish. The text below is reproduced from the certified original text, which the editors received from the United Nations Treaty Section.

TEXT PUBLISHED IN: United Nations General Assembly resolution 31/72, Annex. Resolutions and decisions adopted by the General Assembly during its Thirty-first session, Vol. 1, 21 September–22 December 1976. General Assembly Official Records: Thirty-first session, Supplement No. 39 (A/31/39), New York, United Nations, 1977, pp. 36–38 (Engl. — see also Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish editions); UNTS, Vol. 1108, pp. 151–210 (Arabic, Chinese, Engl., French, Span. Russ.); Status of Multilateral Arms Regulations and Disarmament Agreements, 4th edn., 1992, New York, United Nations, 1993 (Sales No. E.93.LX.5 (Vol. I)), pp. 217–230 (Engl.); Etat des accords multilatéraux en matière de désarmement et de contrôle des armements, 3ème édition, New

-163-

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