IRRC No. 283

Proceedings of the Round Table

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This address was given by the ICRC President at the opening of the fourth of a series of expert meetings which considered the use of new laser weapons to permanently blind enemy soldiers. The ICRC had initially been alerted to this problem by the mention, in a number of technical and military publications, of the fact that both vehicle-mounted lasers and hand-held laser rifles are being developed which appear to have two purposes: the destruction of sensors on vehicles, and the targeting of soldiers' eyes. Several governments voiced their concern about this development at the International Conference of the Red Cross in 1986 and the ICRC decided to study the subject in more detail.

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