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US for effective action to control transfer of arms: Hillary

Last Updated: Thursday, October 15, 2009 - 13:27

Washington: Supporting effective action to control international transfer of conventional arms, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Thursday said the Obama administration is prepared to work hard for a strong international standard in this area.
"Conventional arms transfer is a crucial national security concern for the United States, and we have always supported effective action to control the international transfer of arms," Hillary said in a statement.

"The United States is prepared to work hard for a strong international standard in this area by seizing the opportunity presented by the Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty at the United Nations," she said.

"As long as that Conference operates under the rule of consensus decision-making needed to ensure that all countries can be held to standards that will actually improve the global situation by denying arms to those who would abuse them, the United States will actively support the negotiations," Hillary said.

The Secretary of State noted that consensus is needed to ensure the widest possible support for the Treaty and to avoid loopholes that can be exploited by those wishing to export arms irresponsibly.

The US has in place an extensive and rigorous system of controls that most agree is the "gold standard" of export controls for arms transfers, she said, adding that "on a bilateral basis, US regularly engages with other states to raise their standards and to prohibit the transfer or trans-shipment of capabilities to rogue states, terrorist groups, and groups seeking to unsettle regions".

"Multilaterally, we have consistently supported high international standards, and the Arms Trade Treaty initiative presents us with the opportunity to promote the same high standards for the entire international community that the United States and other responsible arms exporters already have in place to ensure that weaponry is transferred for legitimate purposes," she said.

Hillary argued US is committed to actively pursuing a strong and robust treaty that contains the highest possible, legally binding standards for the international transfer of conventional weapons.

Bureau Report

First Published: Thursday, October 15, 2009 - 13:27

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