news from the Control Arms Campaign, a joint collaboration between IANSA, Amnesty International and Oxfam:
30 October 2006
After three years of campaigning, the Control Arms campaign achieved a massive victory on Thursday, October 26, when 139 governments voted in the favor of a UN resolution to start work towards an Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). While 24 governments abstained, the United States was the only government to vote against the resolution. This was a curious outcome, as well as a disappointing one, given that the United States’ own laws and regulations are generally seen to set the standards of best practice at the national level.
Going into the vote, 116 governments co-sponsored the resolution; a huge number for such a bold initiative. 15 Nobel Peace Prize Laureates supported the call for an Arms Trade Treaty this week in a statement issued by the Arias Foundation and the Control Arms Campaign.
Specifically, the resolution calls upon the UN Secretary General to first collect the views of member states on the feasibility and draft parameters for “a comprehensive, legally-binding instrument establishing common standards for the import, export, and transfer of conventional arms” - an ATT - and second to establish a group of governmental experts to examine the issue in detail and report back to the UN General Assembly.
This resolution still needs to be formally adopted at the UN General Assembly in the month's time where more votes in favor of the resolution are envisaged. There is a long way to go until the treaty comes into effect, but this is a hugely important first step.
We would not have reached this point without the support of the more than 1 million people who have joined the Million Faces, and the thousands of dedicated and creative campaigners who have worked so hard up to now on the campaign. We’re counting on you as we continue our efforts to persuade the US to alter its position.