Vatican City, 26 March 2013 (VIS) - Archbishop Francis Chullikatt, Holy See permanent observer to the United Nations in New York, issued a statement calling for the adoption of a treaty banning the transfer of arms when violations of humanitarian or human rights are taking place. The statement was read during the Final Conference of the UN's Arms Trade Treaty, which is taking place in New York until 28 March.
In his message, the archbishop urged “delegations to work together in a consensual manner in order to achieve a historic treaty to control the international trade in arms.” He recalled that, since the start of negotiations, the Holy See has called for “a strong, effective and credible Arms Trade Treaty which will have a real and lasting impact on all people longing to live in a more secure and safe world”.
The statement asserted that “the Holy See has stressed that a responsible international arms trading system should provide strong protections against the transfer of arms to countries where such arms are being used against civilian populations in violation of internationally agreed humanitarian and human rights laws. Further, the Holy See has urged delegations to reorient the regulation of the trade in arms from one which is controlled through the lens of sheer economic interests to one which places overriding importance on human concerns and protecting human life and families.”