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ATT shallow in essence- Russia
April 4, 2013, 2:49 pm

[UN Photo/Shafiqullah Waak]

ATT is the first international treaty seeking to regulate the $70 billion global weapons trade [UN Photo/Shafiqullah Waak]

Commenting on Moscow’s abstention from a UN vote, the head of the Russian delegation in an interview with Kommersant, says the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) “declares good targets but is rather shallow in essence.”

Mikhail Ulyanov, who led the Russian delegation at the recent UN negotiations in New York is Russia’s foreign ministry security and disarmament department director.

“It contains many slogans, but lacks specificity. Its objectives are laid down only in general terms, and the treaty does not clarify how they should be put into practice” said Ulyanov.

ATT is the first international treaty seeking to regulate the $70 billion global trade in conventional weapons.

It establishes tighter control in cross-border arms deals and seeks to reduce the 750,000 annual deaths caused by arms-related incidents.

It applies to all conventional arms, including not only small arms and light weapons, but also battle tanks, armoured vehicles, large-caliber artillery systems, combat aircraft, attack helicopters, warships, missiles and missile launchers.

On Tuesday 154 states voted for the treaty and three against – Iran, Syria and North Korea.

Twenty three countries abstained, including Russia, India and China. 

India’s permanent representative to the Geneva Conference of Disarmament Sujata Mehta said her country strives to impose a fair balance of responsibilities on exporting and importing states.

“India cannot accept that the Treaty be used as an instrument in the hands of exporting states to take unilateral force majeure measures against importing states parties without consequences,” Mehta said.

Chinese deputy permanent representative to the UN Wang Min said: “China has all along supported the negotiations on the Arms Trade Treaty” but that “China is not in favour of pushing through a multilateral arms control treaty at the GA which concerns the international security and the security of all nations.”

Daria Chernyshova

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