The United Nations General Assembly adopted today, by an overwhelming majority, a Resolution establishing the Final United Nations Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), to be held in New York from 18th to 28th March 2013.
The Conference will seek to negotiate the highest possible common international standards for the import, export and transfer of the complete range of conventional weapons. The Conference will be an historical opportunity to achieve a wide-ranging Treaty to address effectively the illegal flow of arms throughout the world.
The Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the seven co-author states of the General Assembly Resolution (Argentina, Australia, Costa Rica, Finland, Japan, Kenya and the United Kingdom) on the ATT have issued the following joint declaration:
"We, the Foreign Ministers of Argentina, Australia, Costa Rica, Finland, Japan, Kenya and the United Kingdom, the co-authors States of the UN General Assembly Resolution on the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), welcome the Resolution's adoption today. We welcome in particular its establishment of the Final United Nations Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty in New York from 18th to 28th March 2013.
The UN General Assembly adopted the Resolution by an overwhelming majority, and with over 100 Member State co-sponsors. This was a clear sign that the vast majority of UN Member States support a strong, balanced and effective Treaty, which would set the highest possible common global standards for the international transfer of conventional arms.
We stress the importance of continuing the international community's work towards the Arms Trade Treaty. The United Nations Conference last July came very close to adopting a Treaty. At the conclusion of the Conference, a clear majority of States called for a swift continuation of the process towards the adoption of the Treaty.
We thank States for their continuing support for the Arms Trade Treaty. We urge all States to work once more towards a strong, balanced and effective Treaty at the Final Conference on the ATT. We encourage all delegations to work in a constructive spirit in order to make the Conference in March a success.
We will continue to work hard to ensure that an effective Arms Trade Treaty will be concluded and adopted by consensus at the end of March. We express our full support to Ambassador Peter Woolcott (Australia), the President-designate of the Final Conference, and urge all States to support his work."