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Norwegian bullets used against soldiers

Norwegian multipurpose ammunition intended for use against material only is used against personnel in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Norwegian paper Nationen got the statement confirmed by a spokesperson for the American military.

The use of 12.7 millimetre multipurpose ammunition against soldiers is controversial. Several tests indicate that the bullets explode when they hit people, and that they therefore have the same effect as the so-called dumdum bullets.

While the Red Cross claims the bullets are in a grey area when it comes to international laws, American authorities claim the ammunition can be used against material and personnel alike. American troops have used the bullets both in Iraq and in Afghanistan, confirms Spokesperson Gary Tallman.

“Norwegian authorities refer constantly to reports that indicate that 12.7 millimetre multipurpose ammunition do not explode, but they have to prove that the bullets do not explode in the human body,” said Magne Barth at the section for international human rights at the Red Cross.

“If the ammunition explodes, and the person who shoots or gives order to shot, knows this and aims at personnel, then that is against the international laws,” Barth said to the paper.

The Red Cross has also previously stated that multipurpose ammunition is against international laws.

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