China develops ‘banned cluster bomb’ that can take out big targets with one shot

China has developed an airborne munitions dispenser that critics claim is actually a banned cluster bomb, according to reports.

The hybrid weapon can reportedly release hundreds of submunitions capable of paralysing large areas.

It is so powerful it can even paralyse an entire airfield in one shot by destroying enemy planes or grounding them, reports suggest.

It weighs 500kg and is said to be a cross between an air-to-ground missile and a guided bomb droppable by aircraft.

The weapon is made by the China Ordnance Industries Group Corporation Limited, officially abbreviated as Norinco, a state-owned defence corporation that manufactures a diverse range of civil and military products.

China Central Television (CCTV) said that its design can also reduce the weapon’s radar cross-section, enhancing its stealth capability.

When dropped, the dispenser can open its wings for a range of over 60 kilometres (37 miles), meaning the aircraft can safely drop it without entering the enemy’s air defence zone.

Each dispenser can carry 240 submunitions of six types which can cover an area of over 6,000 square metres (64,000 square feet), according to CCTV.

However, netizens and some media reports claimed that the new munitions dispenser is a fancy word for a cluster bomb, banned under the international treaty Convention on Cluster Munitions.

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Cluster munitions are banned because they release many small bombs over a wide area, posing a risk to civilians both during the attack and afterwards.

They are also said to leave behind large numbers of dangerous unexploded ordnance.

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Netizen ‘KittyPooh’ said: “It's banned as it releases many small bomblets over a wide area, posing risks to civilians both during attacks and afterwards.

"Cluster munitions are prohibited for those nations that ratify the Convention on Cluster Munitions, adopted in Dublin, Ireland in May 2008.”

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