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  • Position : Program Director, Emerging Technologies and Global Security Program
  • Affiliation : PIR Center
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The Arms Trade Treaty: Mechanism Already Running

14.06.2013

MOSCOW, JUNE 14, 2013. PIR PRESS. – “Actually there is nothing in the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) that could shake the basis of the Russian military export. On the contrary, it allows Moscow to go on carrying out its offers. Moreover, Russia could have turned out to be a leader of the movement for the changes in the arms market, as it is obvious that re-export and arms dealers are the two key components in the illegal arms market. Furthermore Russia has already got methods for conventional weapons control, in the case ATT once really becomes a tool for combating illegal trade” - PIR Center Senior Research Fellow Vadim Kozyulin.

On April 3, 2013 with the majority of 154 votes the United Nations General Assembly approved the text of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). And as early as June 3, 2013 it crossed the necessary threshold for coming into force – ratified by 60 states (with the 50 necessary). Three months later, on September 3, 2013, it will come into effect.

As the PIR Center Senior Research Fellow Vadim Kozyulin says, “being discussed against the background of the Arab spring, the ATT is the result of many compromises, which is reflected in its content. Contrary to the expectations of the international community and the original plans, ATT doesn’t include monitoring tools or any penalties to the agreement-breakers. The strongest language of the treaty encourages the member states to “provide each other with assistance on the basis of mutual consent and in accordance with their national laws”. Arbitration, carried out “on the basis of mutual consent”, is acknowledged as the most serious tool for settling conflicts. Risk evaluation and estimation of arms trading reasonability stay in jurisdiction of the national states”.

Despite the fact that officially Russian position in regard to the Treaty is rather cool, Vadim Kozyulin thinks that ATT doesn’t threaten the Russian interests: “Actually there is nothing in the ATT that could shake the basis of the Russian military export. On the contrary, it allows Moscow to go on carrying out the its offers. Moreover, Russia could have turned out to be a leader of the movement for the changes in the arms market, as it is obvious that re-export and arms dealers are the two key components in the illegal arms market. Furthermore Russia has already got methods for conventional weapons control, in the case ATT once really becomes a tool for illegal trade combating”.

Other Vadim Kozyulin’s comments concerning ATT issues are available on the websites of Kommersant Daily newspaper (in Russian), Nezavisimoye Voyennoye Obozreniye (in Russian) and Russian Council on Foreign Affairs (in Russian).

For comments from PIR Center's experts for mass media please contact PIR Center Internet Project Director Andrey Baklitskiy by phone.:  +7 (985) 764-98-96; e-mail: baklitsky at pircenter.org

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