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evidence of cluster bombs used in Libya

28 December, 2011

In Misrata, a coastal city that saw some of the fiercest fighting during the uprising against Muammar Gaddafi this spring, residents can now peruse evidence of the weapons used against them.

Among the shells and canisters from Britain, France, Russia, Serbia and others are Spanish-made MAT-120 “mortar cargo bombs,” a cluster munition that became infamous when journalists and Human Rights Watch discovered its use by Gaddafi’s forces during Misrata’s siege.

Not long after Spain sold the MAT-120s to Libya in 2008, it signed the international ban on such weapons. Ali Muhamad, a fighter turned curator at the streetside weapons expo, said he had never heard of cluster bombs before Misrata but soon became used to their distinct whistle and explosion.

“To profit from this killing and destruction is wrong,” Muhamad said.

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