Support a Bullet-Proof Arms Trade Treaty

February 9, 2012 in events by Rob Hallam

Monday 13th February, Boyd Orr LT D, University of Glasgow, G12 8QQ
Wanted – a bulletproof global Arms Trade Treaty

Scottish arms control campaigner, David Grimason, will be joined by politicians, campaigning organisations and activists at Glasgow University on Monday 13 February, to launch Amnesty Scotland’s campaign for a global Arms Trade Treaty.

David Grimason, who has pushed for tighter controls on the arms trade since his two year old son Alistair was shot and killed in a Turkish cafe in July 2003, will speak about his experiences and involvement in nearly ten years of arms control campaigning.

David Grimason said:

“It is incredible to think that we may finally be on the brink of delivering something that will prevent the devastating impact that the arms trade has on families around the world. After nearly a decade of governments saying that something must be done, now is the time to finally do it.

“It is up to our politicians to ensure that they put people’s lives ahead of profit, but it is also up to the people of Scotland to make their voices heard and demand that the UK is at the forefront of championing a comprehensive treaty on the sales and transfer of weapons.

“Every day more than 1500 people die from armed violence, the majority of these in countries which are not at war. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to really make a difference to the lives of so many. We have one shot, we must not squander it.”

Shabnum Mustapha, Programme Director for Amnesty in Scotland, said:

” It is mind-boggling to think that we have international treaties governing the selling of postage stamps, bananas, and even dinosaur bones. But when it comes to weapons and the impact that an irresponsible arms trade has on the lives of hundreds of thousands of people around the world, there are no controls.

“We need the UK government to stay true to their word and ensure that a treaty governing the sale and transfer of arms is comprehensive, is enforced and puts human rights at its heart.”

Monday 13th February marks the first day of a week-long conference where countries will debate how the final negotiating conference will operate, as well as some of the content of the treaty including aims and objectives, scope and reporting mechanisms. The final scheduled Treaty negotiating conference will be held at the UN Headquarters in New York from the 2nd until the 27th July this year.

Amnesty International is urging the public to increase pressure on the UK government by writing to party leaders and asking them to publicly commit to lead the way in securing a robust Arms Trade Treaty – for more information

Amnesty International will be joined by Oxfam Scotland, Scottish Refugee Council and the Glasgow Human Rights Network. The event will include a panel discussion followed by a Q&A. Amnesty International will also launch its Scottish campaign briefing at the event.