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AG/RES. 2108 (XXXV-O/05) The Proliferation Of And The Illicit Trade In Small Arms And Light Weapons In All Its Aspects


June 7, 2005

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(Adopted at the fourth plenary session, held on June 7, 2005)

THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY,

HAVING SEEN the Annual Report of the Permanent Council to the General Assembly, in particular the section related to hemispheric security issues (AG/doc.4376/05 add. 5);

RECALLING its resolutions AG/RES. 1642 (XXIX-O/99), AG/RES. 1744 (XXX-O/00), AG/RES. 1796 (XXXI-O/01), AG/RES. 1797 (XXXI-O/01), AG/RES. 1888 (XXXII-O/02), AG/RES. 1968 (XXXIII-O/03), and AG/RES. 1997 (XXXIV-O/04), "Proliferation of and Illicit Trafficking in Small Arms and Light Weapons," and the United Nations Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects;

REAFFIRMING the commitment of member states in the Declaration on Security in the Americas to "combat the illicit manufacturing of and trafficking in firearms, ammunition, explosives, and other related materials by, among other actions, destroying excess stocks of firearms designated by each State, securing and managing national stockpiles, and regulating firearms brokering, including sanctions for illicit arms brokering for the purpose of avoiding their diversion through illicit channels and their proliferation"; and

ACKNOWLEDGING:

The importance of the Second Biennial Meeting of States to Consider the Implementation of the Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (UN Programme of Action) and the importance of the work of the Open-ended Working Group to Negotiate an International Instrument to Enable States to Identify and Trace, in a Timely and Reliable Manner, Illicit Small Arms and Light Weapons;

The valuable contributions made and fruitful results achieved at the First Conference of the States Party to the CIFTA, held in Bogot�, Colombia, on March 8 and 9, 2004, and the adoption of the Declaration of Bogot� on the Functioning and Application of the Inter-American Convention against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition, Explosives, and Other Related Materials (CIFTA);

The importance of the work undertaken by the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD) to develop the capacity of officials in member states to prepare domestic legislation that takes account of the CICAD Model Regulations for the Control of Brokers of Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition; and

The contributions by permanent observers, the international community, and subregional and regional organizations to assist member states with greatest need in addressing the serious threat posed by the proliferation of and illicit trafficking in small arms and light weapons in the Hemisphere,

RESOLVES:

1. To encourage member states to implement the United Nations Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (UN Programme of Action).

2. To encourage member states to report to the United Nations on their implementation of national, regional, and global elements of the UN Programme of Action and to request that they provide a copy of that report to the General Secretariat no later than July 15 of each year; and to commend those member states which have submitted their past reports on the implementation of the UN Programme of Action to the UN and the OAS.

3. To request the Permanent Council to hold annually, at the level of the Committee on Hemispheric Security, a meeting on small arms and light weapons which would review the status of implementation of national, regional, and global elements of the UN Programme of Action and consider further steps to address the proliferation and misuse of small arms and light weapons.

4. To encourage states parties to renew their commitment to the application of the Inter-American Convention against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition, Explosives, and Other Related Materials (CIFTA) and implementation of the Declaration of Bogot� on the Functioning and Application of the Inter-American Convention against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition, Explosives, and Other Related Materials (CIFTA), adopted at the First Conference of the States Party to the Convention.

5. To invite member states which have not done so to consider signing or ratifying the United Nations Protocol Against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition.[1]/

6. To recommend the establishment of a specific fund within the OAS to collect and channel financial resources to member states for small arms collection, destruction, and related training programs.

7. To instruct the General Secretariat to develop and facilitate periodic in-depth courses on small arms, light weapons, and ammunition destruction and stockpile management, in conjunction with the United Nations Department for Disarmament Affairs (DDA) Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UN-LiREC) and the Inter-American Defense College.

8. To urge the international community and subregional and regional organizations to assist member states with greatest need in addressing the serious threat posed by the proliferation of and illicit trafficking in small arms and light weapons in their territories.

9. To encourage member states to consider the adoption of domestic legislation on arms brokering, taking into account the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission's (CICAD) Model Regulations for the Control of Brokers of Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition.

10. To instruct the General Secretariat to transmit the above-mentioned Model Regulations for the Control of Brokers of Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition to the United Nations as a regional contribution to UN General Assembly resolution 59/86.

11. To request CICAD to continue its cooperation with the Consultative Committee of the CIFTA on matters determined by that Committee as part of the Technical Secretariat of the Group of Experts to Prepare Model Legislation on CIFTA Matters, including dissemination of the Model Regulations mentioned above in paragraphs 9 and 10, and develop the capacity of officials in member states to prepare domestic legislation that takes account of these Model Regulations.

12. To encourage member states to adopt the confidence- and security- building measure proposed in the Consensus of Miami: Declaration by the Experts on Confidence- and Security-Building Measures: Recommendations to the Summit-Mandated Special Conference on Security, in which member states are called upon "to identify and secure excess stocks of small arms and light weapons as well as seized small arms and light weapons, and, in accordance with their national laws and international agreements in which they participate, to define programs for the destruction of said weapons and to invite international representatives to observe their destruction."

13. To express appreciation to the Inter-American Defense Board and the Inter-American Defense College for their preparation of a handbook for member states on best practices for the identification, collection, management, security, and destruction of stockpiles of small arms and light weapons.

14. To urge member states which have undertaken commitments to destroy their excess small arms and light weapons to take full advantage of the technical assistance, training, or other support provided by the pertinent organs, agencies, and entities of the Organization.

15. To instruct the Permanent Council and the General Secretariat to carry out, as the case may be, the activities mentioned in this resolution within the resources allocated in the program-budget of the Organization and other resources.

16. To request the Secretary General to transmit this resolution to the United Nations Secretary-General.

17. To request the Permanent Council and the Secretary General to report to the General Assembly at its thirty-sixth regular session on the implementation of this resolution.


[1]. Colombia has ratified the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its Additional Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, and is fully committed to their application.
However, Colombia has stated that it will not ratify the Protocol against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition since it does not agree with the text of Article 4, paragraph 2, concerning its scope of application. Colombia would have preferred that the Protocol apply to all transfers of firearms, their parts and components, and ammunition, in order to make a real contribution to preventing and combating illicit trafficking therein, and in order that transfers between states, like all other transfers, be subject to the control mechanisms set out in the Protocol.
The definition of "illicit trafficking" contained in Article 3, section (e), of the Protocol must be borne in mind: it states that, for a transfer to be licit, the authorization of all states parties involved in it is required. An escape clause, such as that appearing in Article 4, runs counter to that definition inasmuch as it implies that a state may transfer arms without the authorization or consent of one of the other states concerned. This would not only make such a transfer illicit but also open up the possibility for arms to be transferred to non-state actors.
Colombia, a country that has been seriously affected by the illicit trafficking in arms, cannot accept that certain arms transfers, such as transfers to non-state actors--which in our view constitute a grave crime—and transfers between states be excluded from the Protocol's control measures, and therefore, in accordance with the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, took the sovereign decision not to ratify this Protocol.



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