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Arms Trade Treaty (March 8, 2011)

The work of the second session of the Preparatory Committee for the 2012 Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty (February 28 to March 4, 2011) has just been completed in a positive and constructive atmosphere at the UN.

This treaty will make it possible to regulate the legal international arms trade and to fight against the illegal trade and transfer of arms. It should also foster the increased accountability of States, the implementation of good governance rules and greater transparency in the transfer of arms.

France, as Vice-President of the Preparatory Committee, made a very active contribution to the discussions this week during plenary meetings within the framework of the European Union and in the dialogue with the NGOs. France will continue its action in a spirit of cooperation and transparency in prospect of the next session (July 2011) which will focus on the implementation of the treaty. It will continue to strive to reconcile positions in order to achieve a legally binding instrument, while also seeking to ensure that as many States as possible accede to the treaty.

The feasibility of such a treaty is no longer being called into question.

The list of equipment being considered for inclusion in the scope of the treaty seems to be sufficiently broad and operational. Respect for human rights, international humanitarian law and economic and social development should be included in the evaluation criteria of the transfers. The chapter relating to international cooperation would enable us to help developing States to implement the treaty. It should also include provisions relating to judicial cooperation and judicial assistance which would make it possible to institute legal proceedings against individuals involved in illegal trafficking.


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