The first Conference of States Parties of the Arms Trade Treaty has made progress by laying the foundations for the implementation of the Treaty, but States must show greater urgency and ambition if lives are to be saved.
Important progress was made with decisions taken on the Rules of Procedure, Financial Rules and the seat (Geneva) and head of the new ATT Secretariat (Dumisani Dladla). The conference also appointed Ambassador Emmanuel E. Imohe of Nigeria as the President of the second CSP in 2016.
However, progress made on the critical area of ATT reporting templates was disappointing. Debate continued over how comprehensive and public reports should be, with some resistant to the idea of public reporting. Consequently, an interim decision has been made on how States will report on all arms transfers with the creation of a provisional reporting template that will be tested for 12 months and then reviewed.
The Control Arms Coalition urged States to raise their game and reflect the ambition showed when the Treaty was first adopted.
Geoffrey Duke, Head of Secretariat at South Sudan Action Network on Small Arms (SSANSA), speaking on behalf of Control Arms on the final day said:
“While we have been here in Cancun, peace has been agreed in South Sudan. It is too soon to be confident that my country will not slide back into civil war, but the ATT has the potential to significantly contribute to creating a better future for South Sudanese by curbing the irresponsible transfer of arms into my country.”
Anna Macdonald, Director of the Control Arms Secretariat concluded:
“States must act with greater ambition and more energy to ensure that they stop just discussing the Treaty and start applying its provisions robustly. Only then will it start to put an end to the many humanitarian crises caused by conflict around the world ”.