The arms trade involves almost every country in the world, but more action is needed to consider how the $100 billion a year industry impacts on gender-based violence, the head of a key treaty said on Thursday.
In an interview with UN News’s Daniel Johnson, Ambassador Jānis Kārkliņš of Latvia, President of the 5th Arms Trade Treaty Conference of States Parties meeting in Geneva next week, explains how for the first time, the treaty’s signatories are expected to agree to look at gender as a criteria for weapons exports in future.
Global military spending is the highest it’s been since World War II, despite military spending cuts in the United States and Western Europe.
That’s according to Aude Fleurant, an expert at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).
The growth in spending is being driven largely by countries in Asia.
Ms Fleurant spoke about SIPRI’s research at a recent UN Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) meeting at UN headquarters in New York.
Although Afghanistan has been cleared of nearly 80 per cent of the landmines and other explosive remnants of war (ERW) buried during conflicts, these weapons still pose serious threats to the lives of thousands of citizens.
That’s according to Mohammad Wakil, officer-in-charge of the UN mine action programme which has been operating in the country for more than 25 years.
Last year, landmines and ERW killed 388 people, according to a report by the UN Assistance Mission for Afghanistan (UNAMA).