Photo: NorwayUN/Kjersti Mosli .Photo: NorwayUN/Kjersti Mosli

Signing of the Arms Trade Treaty

6/4/2013 // This statement was delivered by State Secretary Gry Larsen after the signing of the UN Arms Trade Treaty.

Mr. President, Mr. Secretary General, Excellences, Ladies and Gentlemen,

2nd of April was a historic day. Today we are signing and celebrating the Treaty. A Treaty that has the potential to reduce armed violence and human suffering globally.

A treaty that will make a difference.

Norway has, been a strong supporter of The Arms Trade Treaty from the very start. As we all know, there have been obstacles along the way. But we overcame them.

This is a treaty we can be proud of. Yet, the treaty is not perfect. It can certainly be improved and it needs to be implemented in an efficient and comprehensive way.

Norway has throughout the negotiations emphasized the humanitarian perspective of the ATT. We are therefore pleased that the ATT we are signing today contains important humanitarian elements.

It is important that in general, the provisions on prohibitions of transfers pertain to serious violations of all international agreements, which clearly include human rights obligations.

Moreover, transfers that would be used for the commission of genocide, crimes against humanity or all kinds of war crimes are also prohibited.

Norway also attaches importance to the provisions on assessment in Article 7.

It is important that any export that has the potential to lead to negative consequences, such as undermining peace and security, serious violations of international human rights law or international humanitarian law, shall not be authorized.

The same applies to transfers in violation of treaty obligations on terrorism and transnational organized crime.

Let me underline the importance that the risk of gender based violence and violence against women and children are among the criteria that have to be assessed before authorizing an export-

Norway strongly supported this provision, and I am very happy that it has been included.

Norway will apply the provisions of the Treaty to the broadest range of conventional arms, and also to all kinds of international transfers of such arms.

We call on other countries to do the same.

Finally, let me thank the many Governments and their representatives with which Norway has cooperated during this long process.

Let me also extend a special and heartfelt thank you to the civil society for their relentless, efficient and professional support for The Arms Trade Treaty and for their cooperation throughout this process.

We would not have been here today, had it not been for our joint efforts to get a strong treaty.

Thank You.


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