Minister for Trade and Development Joe Costello signs the landmark Arms Trade Treaty
Minister Costello is pictured signing the Treaty. Also in the picture are UN Under Secretary General for Legal Affairs, Patricia O'Brien and UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, Angela Kane
Trade and Development Minister Joe Costello today signed the Arms Trade Treaty on behalf of Ireland at the United Nations in New York.
The Arms Trade Treaty is the first legally binding instrument to regulate the international trade in conventional weapons. It was agreed in April after over six years of discussions and negotiations. States that sign up to the Treaty are prohibited from exporting arms to countries if they know those weapons will be used to commit gross violations of human rights.
Speaking at the UN, Minister Costello described the Treaty as a “strong, robust and comprehensive instrument” that “will reduce human suffering and save lives” when fully implemented. The Minister paid tribute to the important role played by civil society in supporting and developing the Treaty, which he described as “a triumph for NGO activists and the indispensable role which they play” as well as an achievement by States.
The Arms Trade Treaty, which also obliges States to take steps to ensure the weapons they export do not fall into the illegal arms market, will enter into force 90 days after 50 States have signed and ratified it. Ireland will move to ratify the treaty within the next six months.
Read the full press release here