WASHINGTON, April 2, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Rachel Stohl, a senior associate at the Stimson Center who has served as a consultant for six years to the United Nations on the Arms Trade Treaty that was approved today by the U.N. General Assembly, issued the following statement welcoming passage of the treaty:
"The United Nations has taken an important step to close dangerous loopholes that have allowed the international arms trade to operate with impunity. Stopping this deadly trade and establishing common rules is a positive step that will make the world a safer place. Now for the first time the international trade in conventional arms will be regulated by a legally binding treaty. States will be held accountable for their arms trade. Warlords and human rights abusers will have a harder time gaining access to arms."
As a result of Stohl's work for the U.N., Stimson will host an event from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Friday at 1111 19 th St., NW in Washington looking at what the treaty means for the United States, featuring lead U.S. Arms Trade Treaty Negotiator and Assistant Secretary of State Thomas Countryman. The event will highlight the reactions to the successful adoption of the treaty from key U.S. stakeholders and discuss what comes next.The United Nations General Assembly adopted the historic Arms Trade Treaty by a vote of 154-3 with 23 abstentions. The treaty will be open for signature beginning June 3. The ATT is the first treaty regulating the international trade in conventional arms by establishing common international standards for national implementation. The absence of such international standards has fueled conflicts, armed violence and crime around the world by allowing rogue regimes, rebel groups, terrorist organizations and criminals to be armed with impunity. For decades, states have tried to close these dangerous loopholes without success.