Negotiations on the Arms Trade Treaty in New York are approaching their final stage. Finland has actively worked together with the other cosignatories of the original proposal to start the process with the aim of achieving a robust and comprehensive treaty. It is still not possible to know for certain whether the treaty will come into being or not, and many key questions will be resolved only at the end of the negotiations.
It looks as if Small Arms and Light Weapons will be covered by the treaty but it is still open whether ammunitions will also be included. The criteria for authorizing sales remain even more open, and the way they will be resolved will determine the real value of the treaty,
It has to be underlined, that an Arms Trade Treaty is not an end in itself, it has also to make a real difference. It is better to reject a weak treaty than to agree to a treaty which will only serve to legitimize the arms trade, without any real effects on the scope of the trade, the proliferation of illegal arms and their use for human rights abuses and other illegal ends.