UK to push for ammunition control in Arms Trade Treaty
Britain is to push for ammunition sales to be covered by new international arms trade controls despite strong resistance from the US.
The UK sees the inclusion of ammunition as an essential element of the proposed Arms Trade Treaty and will negotiate hard for it when a month-long conference opens at the United Nations in New York next week.
But the British delegation faces opposition from a number of countries including China, Egypt and Syria but also its traditional ally America.
Russia, which has faced condemnation for selling arms to President Bashar Assad's regime in Syria, is also unlikely to sign a treaty that will prevent it from doing so in future.
Failure to bring sceptics on board will mean that the treaty either has to be watered down or will have less international reach.
Six years in gestation, the treaty is intended to establish common international standards on the trade in arms and prevent illicit sales.
Signatories will have to control arms exports and block those that might, for example, support human rights abuses, conflict and corruption.
However, the precise coverage of the treaty will be thrashed out at the July conference and compromises are inevitable.
The UK wants the agreement to regulate the sale of all conventional weaponry, small arms, light weapons, parts and components, ammunition and military technology. Ammunition is seen as fundamental, as without it weapons cannot be used.
Britain's negotiators are keen to avoid a weak treaty which they cannot sign up to but also want to ensure that it is widely supported.
That's some guestlist! Stunning images show huge dynastic wedding between Ultra-Orthodox Jewish families which attracted 25,000 guests
Man and woman arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder victim of Woolwich machete attack, named as Drummer Lee Rigby
'Sickening, deluded and unforgivable': Horrific attack brings terror to London’s streets
World news in pictures
Ingrid Loyau-Kennett, the mother-of-two hailed as a hero for confronting Woolwich attackers, thought: 'better me than a child'
- 1 Man and woman arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder victim of Woolwich machete attack, named as Drummer Lee Rigby
- 2 'Sickening, deluded and unforgivable': Horrific attack brings terror to London’s streets
- 3 Grace Dent: I’m not sure how these people can avoid being called ‘bigots’. And the more ‘civilised’, the worse they are
- 4 Woolwich murder: They killed, then they performed - these men should be starved of our attention
- 5 Woolwich attack: The EDL will seek to exploit this evil crime for their own evil ends
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Nook is donating eReaders to volunteers at high-need schools and participating in exclusive events throughout the campaign.
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.