The United Kingdom will play its part. We will aim to ratify within the year and we will spare no effort to ensure this Arms Trade Treaty makes a real difference to the people that need it most, for finally I have signed for the innocent, caught up in conflict instigated by the wickedness of others, I sign for lives needlessly lost, in the hope that by making it more difficult for illicit arms to cause misery, an extra chance may be allowed for peaceful resolution of conflict, so that the world of my children and granddaughter will be that bit more bearable.
UN Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty

The Arms Trade Treaty Conference begun at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on July 2nd, and will take place until 27 July 2012. Negotiations will be carried out by the 193 Member States of the UN. In addition, hundreds of representatives from non-governmental organizations, public interest groups, the arms industry, media and inter-governmental organizations will attend.

Concerned by the misuse of weaponry around the world, civil society organizations have successfully mobilized governments and parliamentarians to call for the global regulation of the conventional arms trade. Countries have discussed the matter within the UN since 2006, and are set to negotiate an Arms Trade Treaty during this year’s Conference.

Arms Trade Treaty Conference Documents (available in the six official UN languages)

Provisional Rules of Procedure

Compilation of views on the elements of an arms trade treaty

Report of the Preparatory Committee

More Conference documents can be found here

Amnesty International volunteers in full effect last night in Stuttgart promoting the Arms Trade Treaty! Did you know that 500,000 deaths occur every year as a result of irresponsible arms transfers and those arms are being used to facilitate human rights violations including unlawful killings, sexual violence, recruitment of child soldiers and forcible evictions. Have you signed State Radio’s petition in support of the Arms Trade Treaty yet?


UK and 17 other countries deposited Arms Trade Treaty Instruments of Ratification to the UN, bringing us step closer to a safer world.