On 12 August, Antigua and Barbuda became the fourth State to ratify the UN Arms Trade Treaty. The island nation was one of 10 Caribbean Community (CARICOM) members to sign the ATT at the United Nations on the day the Treaty opened for signature. The move by Antigua reaffirms CARICOM’s strong and persistent role in making efforts to control the irresponsible global arms trade a reality. The regional bloc was a progressive leader throughout negotiations, urging UN Member States to insert strong provisions on arms diversion, transshipment, and ammunition controls in the Treaty. Guyana, also a member of CARICOM ratified the ATT on 5 July.
Control Arms welcomes Antigua and Barbuda’s ratification and views the recent flurry of signatures and ratifications as timely momentum in advance of the opening of the 68th session of the UN General Assembly. The Caribbean Coalition for Development and the Reduction of Armed Violence (CDRAV), a prominent regional member of Control Arms, particularly welcomed Antigua and Barbuda’s ratification according to Folade Mutota, the group’s Coordinator. Ms Mutota added, “it is imperative that CARICOM Member States demonstrate their commitment to breathing life into this Treaty consistent with the region’s leadership role during the negotiations.”