EU – Conclusions on the Arms Trade Treaty

3026th AGRICULTURE and FISHERIES Council meeting – Brussels, 12 July 2010
The Council adopted the following conclusions:
„The Council firmly supports the negotiation of an Arms Trade Treaty, a legally binding international instrument establishing common international standards for the import, exports and transfers of conventional weapons. Such an international instrument will certainly contribute to reinforce international peace and security.

The Council welcomes the adoption by the UN General Assembly, with the support of all EU Member States, of resolution 64/48 on the Arms Trade Treaty. The resolution mandates five meetings of a Preparatory Committee leading to a UN negotiating conference in 2012 on the Arms Trade Treaty.

The Council looks forward to the first session of the Preparatory Committee to be held in New York on 12-23 July 2010, and expresses its readiness to contribute to the works of the Preparatory Committee in order to ensure that they will be effective and substantial.

The Council will work towards reaching agreement in the Preparatory Committee on concrete and comprehensive recommendations on the content of a future Treaty to be submitted for consideration by the 2012 UN Conference.

In the view of the Council, in order to be most effective, an Arms Trade Treaty should be as universal as possible and have a real impact on the conventional arms trade. A strong and robust Arms Trade Treaty should prevent conventional weapons from being used to threaten security, destabilise regions and states, violate international human rights law or international humanitarian law, undermine economic and social development or exacerbate conflict. An ATT should also prevent the diversion of conventional weapons to the illicit market.

To this effect, the scope of the Treaty, in terms of arms and activities covered, should be as wide as possible. The treaty should also require State Parties to assess all applications for arms trade against the highest possible standards and parameters, including the respect for human rights and international humanitarian law, and a thorough analysis of the risk of diversion to unintended users. The Arms Trade Treaty should include transparency, monitoring and assistance provisions.

The Council underlines that no effort should be spared to ensure that the sessions of the Preparatory Committee will be as inclusive as possible. To this end the Council adopted on 14 June 2010 Council Decision 2010/336/CFSP on EU activities in support of the Arms Trade Treaty process.

The Council Decision foresees a series of outreach activities, promoting the ATT process among UN Member States, civil society, and industry, building on the results of the regional seminars on ATT held in 2009 in the framework of Council Decision 2009/42/CFSP.“

Council of the European Union