ATT Reaches Milestone 100 States Parties By: Rachel Stohl - Managing Director, Stimson

The Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) has reached an important milestone with 100 States Parties joining the effort to stop the unregulated and irresponsible trade in conventional arms.

Photo Credit: Arms Trade Treaty Secretariat

In 2013 governments from around the world adopted this important treaty– the first legally-binding treaty to regulate the international transfer of conventional weapons. The ATT aims to bring greater transparency and responsibility to the global arms trade.

Although we celebrate a big step in the ATT’s development, we also recognize that conventional weapons continue to be used to wage war and contribute to immeasurable human suffering. From Yemen to Syria, Brazil to DRC, and South Sudan to the Philippines, arms continue to flow with impunity and governments fail to utilize the ATT to its full potential.

Photo by: Jordi Bernabeu Farrús

Universalization of the ATT is an important step, and States Parties should encourage other States to join the ATT. And, there are several further steps governments can take to ensure the ATT is working:

Photo by: Normunds Mezins, RYC

States must adopt high standards and develop robust systems to ensure that their national systems are in compliance with the ATT’s obligations.

States must improve their efforts to support transparency of the arms trade and their national systems to support ATT implementation. They must submit comprehensive and public reports on time in compliance with their ATT obligations.

(Photo by: Keith Bedford)

States must improve their national efforts and increase their cooperation with others to help stop the diversion of arms from the legal to the illicit market and prevent arms from falling into hands of human rights abusers and being used to perpetuate humanitarian catastrophes.

Photo by: Albert Gonzalez Farran

As we celebrate the commitment of 100 States to stop the scourge of weapons, governments must be equally intense about ensuring that the humanitarian promise of the ATT remains central, and that meaningful and effective implementation of the Treaty is a priority.

For more information on the Arms Trade Treaty and effective implementation and public reporting see www.armstrade.info .

Additional photo credits: Header Image - Paramita Nath


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