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armies & armaments


Main Topic: Coordinator Comments

The eighth and final programme area in the United Nations Declaration and Programme of Action for a Culture of Peace (Resolution A/53/243, 1999) concerns international peace and security with an emphasis on disarmament:

(a) Promote general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control, taking into account the priorities established by the United Nations in the field of disarmament;

(b) Draw, where appropriate, on lessons conducive to a culture of peace learned from "military conversion" efforts as evidenced in some countries of the world...

(e) Take measures to eliminate illicit production and traffic of small arms and light weapons;

During the half century of the United Nations, there has been little progress toward the goal of disarmament. The one exception was at the end of the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the West (Europe and the United States), when there was a partial nuclear disarmament. During that time, the technical problems of verification and inspection were solved, showing that disarmament is a political, not a technical problem.

More recently the major disarmament agreement, the banning of land mines, was initiated not by the United Nations and its Member States, but as an initiative of the civil society. For this initiative, Jody Williams and the International Campaign to Ban Land Mines, won the Nobel Peace Prize for 1997.

A similar initiative is underway to ban cluster bombs, and there is discussion for a treaty to limit the traffic in small arms. As in the case of the Land Mine Treaty, the initiative comes from the civil society and there is considerable opposition from the Permament Members of the Security Council.

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game administrator Jun. 10 2008,13:51
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