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UN General Assembly – Adoption of a resolution on the Arms Trade Treaty (November 7, 2012)

An important step has been taken toward finalizing an arms trade treaty.

France welcomes the adoption by the UN General Assembly’s First Committee of a resolution that will convene in March 2013 in New York a new conference to finalize a treaty. This resolution, which was co-sponsored by 101 member states and strongly backed by France, received overwhelming support.

Following the negotiations that stalled in July 2012, this new conference provides a new opportunity for the international community to finally establish a legally binding instrument to regulate trade in conventional weapons. It will build on the progress already achieved by using the most recent draft treaty, which received broad support, as a basis.

As Germany, Spain, France, Italy, the United Kingdom and Sweden reaffirmed together on September 26, the world needs an arms trade treaty: millions of people around the world suffer the consequences of the uncontrolled spread of arms and illicit trafficking.

This treaty should require states to ensure that arms are not transferred if there’s a clear risk that they may be used to commit serious violations of humanitarian law and human rights. It should cover all types of conventional weapons, notably small arms and light weapons, and munitions. It will also aim to encourage real progress with respect to transparency and preventing the diversion of conventional arms from the legal markets to illicit networks.

Ambassador Roberto Garcia Moritan who chaired the diplomatic conference in July 2012, has done some excellent work. We would like him to be reappointed to head the forthcoming conference in order to bring it to a successful conclusion.

The Arms Trade Treaty is long overdue. France and its partners are determined to achieve a consensus within the international community. The adoption of this resolution is a decisive step toward achieving this objective.


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