Thursday, July 15, 2010

Day 4 of the PrepCom

The Chair announced that a draft programme of work would be issued later during the day. He confirmed that a first meeting convened by the Friend of the Chair on scope would take place in the afternoon. At this meeting, the USA stated that if hunting weapons were included they would block the adoption of an ATT. 

Government statements to the fourth morning of the PrepCom

Egypt wanted clarification in the section on implementation and application between obligations on importing States, exporting States, and those engaged in transshipment. Egypt also wanted clarification on the relevance of international human rights law to the ATT and would prefer not to refer to it at all. It also cautioned against including references to corruption and money-laundering. Egypt wanted the possibility to contest "unfair denials". It suggested starting the drafting process with a political declaration and moving towards a treaty in a "phased approach".

On the Chairman's Draft Principles paper, Egypt stated that it wanted to see a reference to the "right of States to produce and export arms". It also wanted a reference to the importance of nuclear disarmament. It wanted deletion of references to international human rights law and to including small arms and light weapons in the paper.

Nigeria noted the importance of victim assistance and stated that it should be in a section on its own, which would help to highlight the humanitarian aim of this treaty. It called for a provision on relations with States not party and the relationship of the treaty with other agreements. It wanted a prohibition on supplying arms to non-State actors. This was perhaps one of the most critical issues for Nigeria.

Belgium speaking on behalf of the European Union warmly welcomed the Chairman's Draft Principles paper. On the elements, Belgium stated that the scope should cover conventional arms and related materials. An annex could cover the list of related materials covered by the treaty. The EU proposed a later guide to implementation. It proposed that any reference to non-discrimination should be included in the preamble not the body text. EU could accept a "minimal" international implementation support secretariat within the UN. It wanted a reference to the risk of corruption and the obligation to combat such corruption in accordance with relevant international instruments.

Indonesia was disappointed that the draft did not better reflect its concern about the right to maintain terrritorial integrity.

Switzerland called for a separate section on definition and costs in the draft elements paper.

Namibia stated that the principles should be in the preamble.

France was "surprised" by certain of the statements of Egypt. It did not agree with making a distinction between importing and exporting States. France said the impact of trade on development and the importance of international human rights and humanitarian law was critical for the treaty. A reference to corruption was also essential.

Brazil stated the need for marking and transfer of small arms to be included as a precondition to their transfer. It welcomed the Draft Principles paper.

Singapore suggested the need for adding a reference to consensus negotiation of the treaty. It also wanted a

Norway welcomed the Draft Principles paper. It disagreed strongly with any attempts to delete the reference to international human rights and humanitarian law. It felt that too much reference was made to State security.  It called for reference to the need to reduce armed violence. It wanted a reference to key Security Copuncil resolutions on sexual violence and women, peace and security and also to the rights of victims of armed violence.

Japan welcomed the Draft Principles paper. It could be reorganised and streamlined. It felt strongly that the reference to international human rights and humanitarian law should be maintained. 

Trinidad and Tobago agreed with retaining the reference to international human rights and humanitarian law should be maintained. It wanted a reference to drug trafficking.

Iran did not want any reference to Security Council embargoes or to address small arms and light weapons. It wanted additional paragraphs limiting or avoiding any ATT restrictions on the right to procure equipment.

The Russian Federation stated that more emphasis on responsibilities needed to be included in the paper on draft principles.

The Philippines wanted definitions added to the paper on draft elements, as well as victim assistance. It also wanted a reference to record keeping and regional cooperation. On draft principles, it supported Indonesia.

Syria did not want any reference to the Security Council in the draft principles paper.

Pakistan again questioned the feasibility of the treaty. It wanted deletion of references to international human rights and humanitarian law, but was open to being convinced of the appropriateness. It wanted emphasis of the primacy of the State. It noted that there were no consensus definitions of terrorism or non-State actor.

Thailand wanted definitions to be included in the draft elements paper.

Italy stated with respect to Egypt's concern about unfair denials that it was not possible to oblige States to transfer weapons.

The USA noted that this was not a drafting exercise.

Egypt questioned what assistance could be provided to victims.

New Zealand called for a reference to the role of civil society in the preamble. It suggested that violations of IHL and human rights law was one of the consequences of irresponsible arms trade. It called for a reference to accountability in the preamble.

Belgium speaking on behalf of the EU welcomed the draft principles paper. It wanted reference to the "obligations" of States under international law. It noted that national implementation must be in accordance with the ATT. It reiterated its call for a reference to the risk of corruption.

Australia stated that the right to manufacture and transfer weapons should be "in accordance with international law".

India wanted to add development and acquisition of weapons in paragraph 6 of the Chair's paper.

South Africa stressed that the ATT cannot create an obligation to export.

Nigeria approved of the references to small arms and light weapons and armed conflict.

Libya supported Egypt's statement.

Spain opposed suggestion of including reference to nuclear disarmament.

Israel wanted a reference to the threat of the use of force. It did not want a reference to self-determination. It wanted a reference to the responsibility of States to regulate the arms trade. It wanted a reference to "terrorists" before unauthorised non-State actors.

China welcomed the Chair's paper as a basis for discussion.

Side Event: Supporting the ATT negotiations through regional discussions, activities, and research

The European Union and UNIDIR presented their new project supporting the ATT negotiations through regional discussions, activities, and research. Sergio Duarte, the UN High Representative for Disarmament, stressed the importance of regional input to the ATT to generate a common and agreed platform for discussion, engage national parliamentarians, and draw on the work of civil society and academic institutions.

Cyriaque Agnekethom from the ECOWAS Commission gave his views on the ECOWAS experience and regional seminar that took place in Dakar in April 2009. He felt it served as an useful forum for increasing understanding on the ATT process, focusing on sub-regional specificities and concerns, and exchanging views on what should be in a possible ATT.

Elie Kytömäki (UNIDIR) concluded the session by presenting the upcoming EU-UNIDIR activities and research in support of the ATT process. Thus includes the organisations of seven regional seminars in 2010-2012.


  1. Thanks for this report. Can we have an analysis of the day's proceeding, pls?

  2. Thanks, Anon, we'll be putting an analysis of the week's proceedings online tomorrow with some suggested text for the treaty.