New York

14 March 2013

Statement by the Secretary-General on the United Nations Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty

I look forward to the Final United Nations Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), which will commence its work next week in New York. I am confident that Member States will overcome their differences and muster the political will needed to agree on this landmark treaty.

It is our collective responsibility to put an end to the inadequate regulation of the global trade in conventional weapons -- from small arms to tanks to combat aircraft.

I reiterate my support for an Arms Trade Treaty that regulates international transfers of both weapons and ammunition and provides for common standards for exporting States.  These standards are important for assessing the risks that transferred weapons are not used to fuel conflict, arm criminals or abet violations of international humanitarian or human rights law.  This is the only path to more accountability, openness and transparency in the arms trade.

A robust ATT will help alleviate the plight of the millions of people affected by conflicts and armed violence and enable the United Nations to better carry out its mandate to promote peace, development and human rights around the world.  Adoption of this treaty will also provide much-needed momentum for wider disarmament and non-proliferation efforts by the international community.