Search this site

GUNMAN TERROR‎ > ‎

U.N. Arms Trade Treaty


Title: Arms Trade Treaty
Date:
July 2–27, 2012
Source:
Wikipedia


Abstract:
The Arms Trade Treaty is the name of a controversial potential multilateral treaty that would regulate the international trade in conventional weapons. The treaty was negotiated at a global conference under the auspices of the United Nations from July 2–27, 2012 in New York.[1]

Origins
The ATT is part of a larger global effort begun in 2001 with the adoption of a non-legally binding program of action at the United Nations Conference on the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects in 2001. This program was formally called the “Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects” (PoA).[2]

Later put forward in 2003 by a group of Nobel Peace Laureates led by Óscar Arias, the ATT was first addressed in the UN in December 2006 when the UN General Assembly adopted resolution 61/89 “Towards an Arms Trade Treaty: establishing common international standards for the import, export and transfer of conventional arms”.

The arms trade treaty, like the PoA, is predicated upon a hypothesis that the illicit trade in small arms is a large and serious problem requiring global action through the UN. This hypothesis was ultimately disproven through progressive improvements in scholarship in the 2000s. The global size, scope, and impact of the entirely illicit international trade in small arms turned out to be much smaller and less of a concern to countries themselves than first hypothesized, with internal societal factors rising in relative importance.

According to a well regarded 2012 Routledge Studies in Peace and Conflict Resolution publication, "the relative importance of diversion or misuse of officially authorised transfers, compared to international entirely illegal black market trafficking has been thoroughly confirmed."[3] The authors go on to elaborate that..."For most developing or fragile states, a combination of weak domestic regulation of authorised firearms possession with theft, loss or corrupt sale from official holdings tends to be a bigger source of weapons concern than illicit trafficking across borders."[4]

Development
Resolution 61/89 requested the UN Secretary-General to seek the views of Member States on the feasibility, scope and draft parameters for a comprehensive, legally binding instrument establishing common international standards for the import, export and transfer of conventional arms, and to submit a report on the subject to the General Assembly at its sixty-second session. 94 States submitted their views, which are contained in the 2007 report A/62/278.[5]
Support from Member States

153 Member States voted in favor of Resolution 61/89. UK Ambassador John Duncan formally introduced the resolution in First Committee on October 18, 2006, speaking on behalf of the co-authors (Argentina, Australia, Costa Rica, Finland, Japan, and Kenya). On behalf of the EU, Finland highlighted the support for the effort when it said, “everyday, everywhere, people are affected by the side effects of irresponsible arms transfers... As there is currently no comprehensive internationally binding instrument available to provide an agreed regulator framework for this activity, the EU welcomes the growing support, in all parts of the world, for an ATT.”[6]

24 countries abstained: Bahrain, Belarus, China, Egypt, India, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Kuwait, Laos, Libya, Marshall Islands, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, UAE, Venezuela, Yemen, and Zimbabwe. The United States of America voted against the resolution.[7]

Several countries provided explanations of vote: Jamaica, Cuba, Venezuela, China, India, Iran[dead link], Algeria, Libya, Russian Federation, Israel, Pakistan, and Costa Rica.[8]

Responding to procedural concerns that were not resolved before the final draft of the resolution, the UK said the aim of the initiative is to start a discussion on the feasibility and draft parameters of an ATT and that those “agnostic” states will have a clear opportunity to engage in the process. After the vote, Algeria indicated that the effort must receive broad-based support from states and be based on the principles of the UN Charter.[9]

Group of Governmental Experts

Resolution 61/89 also requested the Secretary-General to establish a group of governmental experts, on the basis of equitable geographical distribution, to examine the feasibility, scope and draft parameters for such a legal instrument, and to transmit the report of the group of experts to the Assembly for consideration at its sixty-third session. On September 28, 2007, the Secretary General appointed a Group of Governmental Experts from the following 28 countries: Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Romania, Russian Federation, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and United States. The GGE met three times in 2008 and its final report[10] has now been made public, to be submitted by the Secretary-General to the General Assembly in Fall 2008.[11][12]

Preparatory Committee

In 2009 an Open-ended Working Group—open to all States—held two meetings on an arms trade treaty. A total of six sessions of this Group were planned. However, at the end of 2009 the General Assembly decided by resolution A/RES/64/68[13] to convene a Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty in 2012 "to elaborate a legally binding instrument on the highest possible common international standards for the transfer of conventional arms". The General Assembly also indicated that the remaining four sessions of the Open-ended Working Group should be considered as sessions of the Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) for this Conference. The first PrepCom took place in July 2010, the second was in February–March 2011, the third in July 2011 and the fourth in February 2012.

U.S. Overturns Former Position
On October 14, 2009, the Obama administration announced in a statement released by Hillary Clinton and the State Department that it was overturning the position of former President George W. Bush's administration, which had opposed a proposed Arms Trade treaty on the grounds that national controls were better.[14] The shift in position by the U.S., the world's biggest arms exporter with a $55-billion-a-year trade in conventional firearms[15] (40 percent of the global total), led to the launching of formal negotiations at the United Nations in order to begin drafting the Arms Trade Treaty. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a statement the U.S. would support the negotiations on condition they are “under the rule of consensus decision-making needed to ensure that all countries can be held to standards that will actually improve the global situation.” Clinton said the consensus, in which every nation has an effective veto on agreements, was needed “to avoid loopholes in the treaty that can be directly exploited by those wishing to export arms irresponsibly.”[15]

Opposition
Opposition to the ATT can be broken down into state opposition and civil society opposition. Over thirty states objected to various parts of the ATT over the years, the majority of which held strong concerns about the implications for national sovereignty. According to armstreaty.org, the leading ATT negotiations tracking website, countries such as Cuba, Venezuela, Egypt, Iran object to many more aspects of the ATT than United States. Perhaps because of anti-american sentiment, many have chosen to blame the US for undermining ATT during the UN ATT Conference in New York in 2012 however.

From a civil society point of view, groups concerned about national sovereignty or individual rights to armed defense have been quite wary of the ATT. While not fundamentally opposed to an ATT, these groups are keenly sensitive to ensuring an ATT does not undermine national constitutional protections and individual rights. The most vocal and organized civil society groups opposing objectionable aspects to the ATT have tended to be from the United States. These groups include IAPCAR, the NRA, NSSF, and the Heritage Foundation.

Perhaps the largest source of civil society opposition to the ATT has come from The Institute for Legislative Action, which is the lobbying arm of the National Rife Association, voiced opposition to the treaty, writing that:

"Anti-gun treaty proponents continue to mislead the public, claiming the treaty would have no impact on American gun owners. That's a bald-faced lie. For example, the most recent draft treaty includes export/import controls that would require officials in an importing country to collect information on the 'end user' of a firearm, keep the information for 20 years, and provide the information to the country from which the gun was exported. In other words, if you bought a Beretta shotgun, you would be an 'end user' and the U.S. government would have to keep a record of you and notify the Italian government about your purchase. That is gun registration. If the U.S. refuses to implement this data collection on law-abiding American gun owners, other nations might be required to ban the export of firearms to the U.S." [16]

Given the predominant position of the United States as a global arms exporter,[17] any such treaty would have limited relevance without its participation. Ratification would require passage by a 2/3 majority of the U.S. Senate in addition to presidential approval, which is rendered unlikely by opposition from gun rights groups such as the National Rifle Association and Gun Owners of America, who claim that the treaty is an attempt to circumvent the Second Amendment and similar guarantees in state constitutions in order to impose domestic gun regulations.[18] Advocates of the treaty claim that it only pertains to international arms trade, and would have no effect on current domestic laws.[19][20] These advocates point to the UN General Assembly resolution starting the process on the Arms Trade Treaty. The resolution explicitly states that it is “the exclusive right of States to regulate internal transfers of arms and national ownership, including through constitutional protections on private ownership.”

As of September 14, 2011, 58 US Senators (45 Republicans and 13 Democrats) have expressed their opposition to an ATT that would limit the Second Amendment rights of US citizens.[21] As this group comprises far more than 1/3 of the Senate, it is sufficient to block ratification of the treaty by the United States if the treaty addresses civilian ownership of firearms. However, the strength of the opposition remains unclear because the treaty will not likely address the Second Amendment issue.

Advocated Contents

International non-government and human rights organizations including Amnesty International, Oxfam and the International Action Network on Small Arms (who lead the Control Arms Campaign) have developed analysis on what an effective Arms Trade Treaty would look like.[22]

It would ensure that no transfer is permitted if there is substantial risk that it is likely to:
be used in serious violations of international human rights or humanitarian law, or acts of genocide or crimes against humanity;
facilitate terrorist attacks, a pattern of gender-based violence, violent crime or organized crime;
violate United Nations Charter obligations, including UN arms embargoes;
be diverted from its stated recipient;
adversely affect regional security; or
seriously impair poverty reduction or socioeconomic development.

Loopholes would be minimized. It would include:
all weapons—including all military, security and police arms, related equipment and ammunition, components, expertise, and production equipment;
all types of transfer—including import, export, re-export, temporary transfer and transshipment, in the state sanctioned and commercial trade, plus transfers of technology, loans, gifts and aid; and
all transactions—including those by dealers and brokers, and those providing technical assistance, training, transport, storage, finance and security.

It must be workable and enforceable. It must:
provide guidelines for the treaty's full, clear implementation;
ensure transparency—including full annual reports of national arms transfers;
have an effective mechanism to monitor compliance;
ensure accountability—with provisions for adjudication, dispute settlement and sanctions;
include a comprehensive framework for international cooperation and assistance.

NGOs are also advocating that the Arms Trade Treaty must reinforce existing responsibilities to assist survivors of armed violence, as well as identify new avenues to address suffering and trauma.

The U.S. NGO Second Amendment Foundation has voiced concern that a multinational treaty limiting the firearms trade might infringe on the constitutional privilege of private firearm ownership for self-defense[how?] in some countries such as the U.S.[23]

Criticism
On July 12, 2012, the United States issued a statement condemning the selection of Iran to serve as vice president of the conference. The statement called the move "outrageous" and noted that Iran is under Security Council sanctions for weapons proliferation.[24] The U.N. watchdog group UN Watch also condemned the move, noting that it happened after a UN Security Council report determined that Iran was guilty of illegally transferring guns and bombs to Syria, which is a breach of a U.N. ban on weapons exports by Iran.[25][26] (Wikipedia, 2012).

Title:
The U.N. Arms Trade Treaty: Are Our 2nd Amendment Rights Part Of The Deal?
Date:
July 10, 2012
Source:
Forbes

Abstract: One year ago I wrote an article titled “U.N. Agreement Should Have All Gun Owners Up In Arms” which has recently gained a great deal of renewed public interest. This update reviews some more recent developments, offering additional perspective about an immediate matter which should be of great concern to all who value rights guaranteed by our Second Amendment.

The Obama administration is actively engaged in negotiations to finalize details for a new global agreement premised to fight “terrorism”, “insurgency” and “international crime syndicates”. As U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon describes its purpose, “Our goal is clear: a robust and legally binding Arms Trade Treaty that will have a real impact on the lives of those millions of people suffering from consequences of armed conflict, repression and armed violence…It is ambitious, but it is achievable.”

Under the George W. Bush administration, the U.S. originally voted against a resolution that began the process in 2006. However, the current administration reversed that policy, and strongly supports its enactment. In January 2010, U.S. representatives joined with those of 152 other countries in endorsing a U.N. Arms Treaty Resolution to draft a blueprint for enactment in 2012. This activity is planned to be completed by July 27, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has pledged to push hard for Senate ratification. Previously led by the United Kingdom, there can be no doubt that the U.N.’s 193-member General Assembly will approve it.

Foreign ministers of the U.K., France, Germany and Sweden want the treaty to cover all types of conventional weapons, notably including small arms and light weapons, all types of munitions, and related technologies. They also advocate that it include strong provisions governing human rights, international humanitarian law and sustainable development. (More about sustainable development later.)

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Internal Security and Nonproliferation, Thomas Countryman, has stated that the Obama administration does not support regulation of ammunition, but only wants to make it more difficult to “conduct illicit, illegal and destabilizing transfers of arms”. In addition, a press release issued by the U.N. Office for Disarmament Affairs says that “The outcome will not seek to prohibit citizens of any country from possessing firearms or to interfere with the legal trade in small arms and light weapons.”

Such statements have many very strong skeptics, both inside and outside Congress. One reason, among many, is that Iran, a country that is one of the world’s worst human rights violators, yet often chaired the U.N. Human Rights Council…yes Iran, arms supplier to many of America’s most determined adversaries… was selected for a top Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) planning conference position. The members, apparently including U.S. representatives, authorized this selection shortly after the same U.N. found the very same Iran guilty of transferring guns and bombs to the Syrian regime of Bashar Assad who is presently slaughtering thousands of its own citizens. Meanwhile, the U.N., America included, purporting to be distraught about illicit, illegal and destabilizing transfers of arms, watches in the wings as these tragedies unfold. Of course, they’re very busy. Those arms control planning conferences require a lot of attention.

On June 29, 130 Republican House members sent a letter to President Obama and Secretary Clinton arguing that the proposed treaty infringes on the “fundamental, individual right to keep and bear arms”. The letter charges that “…the U.N.’s actions to date indicate that the ATT is likely to pose significant threats to our national security, foreign policy, and economic interests as well as our constitutional rights.” The lawmakers adamantly insist that the U.S. Government has no right to support a treaty that violates the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

Democrats have accused Republicans of making this a political issue, maintaining that the treaty poses no Second Amendment threat. Others, such as former U.N. ambassador John Bolton, caution gun owners to take this initiative seriously. He believes that the U.N. “is trying to act as though this is really just a treaty about international arms trade between nation states, but there is no doubt that the real agenda here is domestic firearms control.”

So let’s review some recent history and see if gun owners and other Second Amendment defenders might have very good reasons to take issue with this treaty. Actually, we don’t have to look back very far at all.

Consider the Fast and Furious debacle, an operation that was represented to be all about targeting bad guys who are committing violent crimes on both sides of our border with Mexico. There can be no remaining doubt that the program was really aimed at border gun shops and their right to conduct legal civilian firearms sales.

And after the 2010 Republican House cleaning dashed President Obama’s dream of a carbon cap-and-trade program, he wasted no time finding a way to circumvent that pesky obstacle. His EPA is gleefully pursuing that same anti-fossil energy agenda. Meanwhile, Congress sits idly by and allows this breach of its constitutional responsibility established by separation of powers to continue.

Then there’s the currently proposed, Obama-endorsed, Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST) which would subordinate U.S. naval and drilling operations beyond 200 miles of our coast to a newly established U.N. bureaucracy. If ratified by Congress, it will grant a Kingston, Jamaica-based International Seabed Authority (ISA) the power to regulate deep-sea oil exploration, seabed mining, and fishing rights. As part of the deal, as much as 7% of U.S. government revenue collected from oil and gas companies operating off our coast will be forked over to ISA for redistribution to poorer, landlocked countries.

The U.S. would have one vote out of 160 regarding where the money would go, and be obligated to hand over offshore drilling technology to any nation that wants it… for free. And who are those lucky international recipients? They will most likely include such undemocratic, despotic and brutal governments as Belarus, Burma, China, Cuba, Sudan and Zimbabwe…all current voting members of LOST.

Both President Bill Clinton and George W. Bush supported the treaty during their tenures, yet they never sent it to the Senate for ratification because of opposition over concerns that it will limit commerce and allow international bodies to wield control over U.S. interests. During W’s term of office, then-Senator Joe Biden introduced LOST before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee he chaired in 2007, yet it was never brought to the floor for a vote.

Steven Groves, an international law fellow at the Heritage Foundation, believes that opposition from Republican members of Congress who have objected to LOST reflects a legitimate deep-seated distrust of the United Nations and other international bodies, observing: “This seems to me a bit of a Trojan Horse for the ability of one country to affect another country’s environmental policy. That’s generally something we do not like as conservatives and Americans.”

Given good prospects that the White House and Senate may have fewer Democrat residents after November, Senator Kerry and other proponents have been working hard to speed up the approval process before moving vans arrive.

But, like LOST, the Arms Trade Treaty can’t be enacted unless Congress ratifies it. Right? And, of course, they would never approve any global agreement that will infringe upon our constitutional Second Amendment protections. Right? Well, let’s assume for argument’s sake that they won’t. But now consider another possibility, something called a “soft law”.

Remember that sustainable development agenda mentioned earlier that the European foreign ministers want to incorporate into the treaty provisions? Originally intended to be implemented in connection with a U.N. treaty, an “Agenda 21” plan was enacted as a soft law in 1993 creating a nongovernmental organization, the “International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives” (ICLEI), by Executive Order after the Clinton administration was unsuccessful in getting Congress to ratify the program. They wouldn’t approve the treaty because it would transfer massive regulatory control over broad aspects of U.S. energy production and consumption. In 2003 the NGO’s name was changed to “ICLEI- Local Governments for Sustainability” to emphasize “local” and diminish concerns about “international” influence and associations with U.N. political and financial ties. ICLEI’s are now active in most of our counties On its web page, “ICLEI: Connecting Leaders”, the organization explains that their networking strategy connects cities and local governments to the United Nations and other international bodies.

Agenda 21 envisions a global scheme for healthcare, education, nutrition, agriculture, labor, production, and consumption. A summary version titled AGENDA 21: The Earth Summit Strategy to Save Our Planet (Earthpress, 1993), calls for “…a profound reorientation of all human society, unlike anything the world has ever experienced—a major shift in the priorities of both governments and individuals and an unprecedented redeployment of human and financial resources.” The report emphasizes that “This shift will demand a concern for the environmental consequences of every human action be integrated into individual and collective decision-making at every level.”

ICLEI’s web page states that its Local Agenda 21 [LA21] Model Communities Programme is “designed to aid local governments in implementing Chapter 28 of Agenda 21, the global action plan for sustainable development.” As Gary Lawrence, a planner for the city of Seattle and an advisor to the Clinton-Gore administration’s Council on Sustainable Development and to U.S. AID commented at a 1998 U.N. Environmental Development Forum in London titled “The Future of Local Agenda 21 in the New Millennium”, “In some cases, LA21 is seen as an attack on the power of the nation-state.” He went on to say, “Participating in a U.N. advocated planning process will very likely bring out many…who would work to defeat any elected official…undertaking Local Agenda 21 …So we will call our process something else, such as comprehensive planning, growth management or smart growth.”

And so they have. “Comprehensive planning”, “growth management” and “smart growth” (which is Agenda 21 with a new name). All mean pretty much the same thing… centralized control over virtually every aspect of urban life: energy and water use, housing stock and allocation, population levels, public health and dietary regimens, resources and recycling, “social justice” and education.

So this time the U.N.-sponsored ATT initiative, whether enacted by Congress or through a soft law Executive Order, can be expected to receive an appealing identity as well. Most likely it will purport to protect us from “terrorism”, “insurgency” and/or “international crime syndicates”. Perhaps, without saying so, it will be pitched to protect us even from ourselves.

Don’t forget that an Illinois senator named Barack Obama was an aggressive advocate for expanding gun control laws, and even voted against legislation giving gun owners an affirmative defense when they use firearms to defend themselves and their families against home invaders and burglars. That was after he served on a 10-member board of directors of the radically activist anti-gun Joyce Foundation in Chicago which contributed large grants to anti-Second Amendment organizations.

But then, as a former lecturer in constitutional law, wouldn’t he certainly realize that the U.N.’s gun- grab agenda violates our sovereign rights? Perhaps the answer to that question warrants some serious reflection! (Forbes, 2012).

Title: UN Gun Control Treaty Will Reveal Gun Laws Obama Really Supports
Date:
July 18, 2012
Source:
Fox News

Abstract:
Sometime later this week, the UN will finally unveil its Arms Trade Treaty. The exact date the treaty will be released is a secret.

Russia, China, France -- with its new Socialist government -- Britain and the Obama administration are writing the treaty behind closed doors. Yet even if the final treaty is being kept under wraps, we still have a pretty good idea of some of the requirements that will be in it.

The group writing the treaty is not promising. Russia and Britain ban handguns and many other types of weapons. The possession of guns for self-defense is completely prohibited in China. The Obama administration is undoubtedly the most hostile administration to gun ownership in US history, with Obama having personally supported bans of handguns and semi-automatic weapons before becoming president. And remember the recent scandal where the Obama administration was caught allowing guns go to Mexican drug gangs, hoping it would help push for gun control laws.

The treaty seems unlikely to ever receive the two-thirds majority necessary to be ratified by the US Senate, but that doesn't mean it still won't have consequences for Americans. In other countries with parliamentary systems, even if the relatively conservative parties oppose approval, ratification is just a matter of time until a left-wing government takes power. Reduced private gun ownership around the world will surely lead to more pressure for gun control in our own country.

The treaty officially aims to prevent rebels and terrorist groups from getting hold of guns. The treaty claims that at least 250,000 people die each year from armed conflicts and that the vast majority of deaths arise from so-called "small arms" -- machine guns, rifles, and handguns.

Regulations of private ownership will supposedly prevent rebels and terrorist groups from getting ahold of guns. But governments, not private individuals, are the sources for these weapons. For example, the FARC fighting in Colombia get their guns from the Venezuelan government.

The most likely regulations to be pushed by the UN treaty are those that have been the favorites of American gun control advocates for years -- registration and licensing, micro-stamping ammunition, and restrictions on the private transfers of guns. Unfortunately, these measures have a long history of failure and primarily just inconvenience and disarm law-abiding gun owners.

Gun registration and licensing are pushed as a way to trace those who supply these illicit weapons. Yet, to see the problem with these regulations, one only needs to look at how ineffective they have been in solving crime. Canada just recently ended its long gun registry as it was a colossal waste of money.

Beginning in 1998, Canadians spent a whopping $2.7 billion on creating and running a registry for long guns -- in the US, the same amount per gun owner would come to $67 billion. For all that money, the registry was never credited with solving a single murder. Instead, it became an enormous waste of police officers' time, diverting their efforts from traditional policing activities.

Gun control advocates have long claimed registration is a safety issue. Their reasoning is straightforward: If a gun is left at a crime scene, and it was registered to the person who committed the crime, the registry will link it back to the criminal.

Unfortunately, it rarely works out this way. Criminals are seldom stupid enough to leave behind crime guns that are registered to themselves.

From 2003 to 2009, there were 4,257 homicides in Canada, 1,314 of which were committed with firearms. Data provided last fall by the Library of Parliament reveal that murder weapons were recovered in less than a third of the homicides with firearms. About three-quarters of the identified weapons were unregistered. Of the weapons that were registered, about half were registered to someone other than the person accused of the homicide.

In only 62 cases -- that is, nine per year, or about 1 percent of all homicides in Canada -- was the gun registered to the accused. Even in these cases, the registry did not appear to have played an important role in finding the killer. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Chiefs of Police have not yet provided a single example in which tracing was of more than peripheral importance in solving a case.

Note that the Canadian data provided above cover all guns, including handguns. It isn't just the long-gun registry -- there is also no evidence that Canada's handgun registry, started in 1934, has ever been important in solving a single homicide.

Micro-stamping involves putting unique codes on a bullet. The most commonly discussed method is to have a special etching that is on the tip of a firing pin, the piece of metal that strikes a bullet and sets off the explosion, that will leave a mark on the bullet casing. The notion then is that if the casing is left a crime scene, the bullet can be traced back to the owner of the gun. The problem is that firing pins can easily be replaced or altered .

As to restrictions on the private transfers of guns, the most common type of regulation involves background checks. Yet, whether one is talking about the Brady Act or the so-called gun show loophole, economists and criminologists who have looked at this simply don’t find evidence that such regulations reduce crime and may even increase it . Indeed, as the surges in murder rates after gun bans in the US and around the world show, such regulations don’t stop criminals from getting guns. A huge percentage of violent crime in the US is drug gang related, and just as those gangs can bring in the illegal drugs, they can bring in the weapons that they use to protect that valuable property.

The treaty will give Americans yet another insight into the types of gun control laws that President Obama really supports. The good news is that the US Senate will almost certainly prevent him from getting the treaty adopted here. Most rest of the world won’t be so lucky (Fox News, 2012).

Title: Bombshell: Leaked UN Treaty Does Ban Guns
Date:
July 26, 2012
Source:
Infowars


Abstract:
The text of the anticipated and hotly-contested United Nations Arms Trade Treaty has been leaked, with the treaty itself set to be adopted and signed by member States as early as tomorrow, July 27. President Obama, today joining the chorus for gun control inside the United States in the wake of the Batman massacre, has previously indicated that he would sign the treaty, which would then have to be ratified by the Senate.

Masked behind the language of promoting peace in an international world by preventing genocide, the UN has unleashed a great Trojan Horse that calls upon States to enact national legislation sufficient to meet the minimum goals outlined in this treaty– including gun registries, background checks, import/export controls and more for arms of all types, including small & conventional weapons. “Each State Party shall adopt national legislation or other appropriate national measures regulations and policies as may be necessary to implement the obligations of this Treaty,” the treaty text states in part.

It makes specific note that the treaty places no limit upon greater gun control efforts within individual nations, and additionally places no expiration on the agreement. The scope of this language proves the analysis by Infowars (1, 2, 3, 4), writers at Forbes and many other publications that have been warning about this deceptive encroachment to be correct– there is an effort to disarm America underway.

The devil, as usual, is in the details.

Repeatedly, the treaty obligates States to establish “national control systems” to meet the particulars of the treaty. While the phrase “within national laws and regulations” appears to suggest that the 2nd Amendment would limit the implementation, properly read in the context of the wording and history itself, it really only invites new “regulations” where no “law” can be established.

These international goals will undoubtedly pressure changes in the executive branches’ many policies, as we have already seen with the ATF, who are trying to outlaw most types of shotguns, and who separately placed greater reporting burdens on gun shops in the Southwest border states as a response to the Fast & Furious set-up by Eric Holder & co. to demonize and destroy gun ownership.

The first “principle” outlined in the preamble reads: “1. The inherent rights of all States to individual or collective self-defense.” While the language of the treaty appears to recognize the legal right to keep such arms, the text actually recognizes the “inherent right of States” to “individual and collective” self-defense.

This is NOT the same as individual persons’ inherent right to keep and bear arms as recognized and enumerated in the United States’ Bill of Rights. Instead, it puts the collectivist unit known as the State above the individual, in complete defiance of the system set-up in the United States. Individual defense for a State, for instance, refers to what is known on the international scene as “unilateral war,” while collective defense is recognize in such actions as that of NATO or other allied bodies. The States’ right to maintain internal order has also been recognized by the UN, but all other purposes for arms ownership are seen as illegitimate.

It specifically recognizes [only] the “lawful private ownership and use of conventional arms exclusively for, inter alia, recreational, cultural, historical and sporting activities for States where such ownership and use are permitted or protected by law.” There’s been a great deal of rhetoric from gun grabbers over the years attempting to emphasize gun ownership for legitimate sporting uses, but the real purpose of arms ownership is a balance of power at the individual level in order to discourage tyranny at the State level. THAT is what the founding fathers intended, and that is the historical legacy Americans cherish.

NO SPECIFIC PROTECTION for individual persons is contained in this dangerous treaty, though the same media who’ve been demonizing critics of the UN’s effort as delusional and paranoid will attempt to argue otherwise, clinging to deliberately inserted clauses herein that look like stop-guards and protections for gun rights, but properly read, do no such thing.

While the UN advises States to keep within the scope of their own laws, the end-run assault against American’s 2nd Amendment is unmistakeable.

The text was released two days ago, but has received almost no attention in the press. The International Association for the Protection of Civilian Arms Rights and The Examiner have analyzed the treaty, while pointing out that member states like France have “let slip that their ultimate goal is to regulate legitimately-owned ‘weapons.’”

The United Nations has a sordid history of pursuing “general and complete disarmament,” and individual arms including legally owned arms have always been part of that focus. The United Nations treaty from 2001, known as the “SADC Protocol: Southern African Development Community” is, according to the UN’s own disarmament website, a “regional instrument that aims to curtail small arms ownership and illicit trafficking in Southern Africa along with the destruction of surplus state weapons. It is a far-reaching instrument, which goes beyond that of a politically binding declaration, providing the region with a legal basis upon which to deal with both the legal and the illicit trade in firearms.”

As we have previously noted, U.S. troops have been trained to confiscate American guns, while the confiscation in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina has already set the precedent. The deception over aiming for legal guns while pretending to target “illicit” weapons is continued here in this 2012 monster treaty.

Below is the text in full, as it has been proposed and released. Any changes in the signed version will be noted when that time comes:

UNITED NATIONS ARMS TRADE TREATY TEXT

PREAMBLE

The States Parties to this Treaty.

Guided by the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.

Recalling that the charter of the UN promotes the establishment and maintenance of international peace and security with the least diversion for armaments of the world’s human and economic resources;

Reaffirming the obligation of all State Parties to settle their international disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security, and justice, are not endangered, in accordance with the Charter of the UN;

Underlining the need to prevent, combat and eradicate the illicit trade of conventional arms and to prevent their diversion to illegal and unauthorized end use, such as terrorism and organized crime;

Recognizing the legitimate political, security, economic and commercial rights and interests of States in the international trade of conventional arms;

Reaffirming the sovereign right and responsibility of any State to regulate and control transfers of conventional arms that take place exclusively within its territory pursuant to its own legal or constitutional systems;

Recognizing that development, human rights and peace and security, which are three pillars of the United Nations, are interlinked and mutually reinforcing.

Recalling the United Nations Disarmament Commission guidelines on international arms transfers adopted by the General Assembly;

Noting the contribution made by the 2001 UN Programme of Action to preventing combating and eradicating the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons in all its aspects, as well as the 2001 Protocol against the illicit manufacturing of and trafficking in Firearms, their parts and components and ammunition, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime;

Recognizing the security, social, economic and humanitarian consequences of the illicit trade in and unregulated trade of conventional arms;

Recognizing the challenges faced by victims of armed conflict and their need for adequate care, rehabilitation and social and economic inclusion;

Bearing in mind that the women and children are particularly affected in situations of conflict and armed violence;

Emphasizing that nothing in this treaty prevents States from exercising their right to adopt additional more rigorous measures consistent with the purpose of this Treaty;

Recognizing the legitimate international trade and lawful private ownership and use of conventional arms exclusively for, inter alia, recreational, cultural, historical and sporting activities for States where such ownership and use are permitted or protected by law;

Recognizing the active role that non-governmental organizations and civil society can play in furthering the goals and objectives of this Treaty; and

16. Emphasizing that regulation of the international trade in conventional arms should not hamper international cooperation and legitimate trade in material, equipment and technology for peaceful purposes;

Have agreed as follows:

Principles

Guided by the Purposes and Principles of the Charter of the United Nations, States Parties, In promoting the goals and objectives of this Treaty and implementing its provisions, shall act in accordance with the following principles:

The inherent rights of all States to individual or collective self-defense;

2. Settlement of individual disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security, and justice, are not endangered;

3. The rights and obligations of States under applicable international law, including international humanitarian law and international human rights law;

4. The responsibility of all States, in accordance with their respective international obligations, to effectively regulate and control international transfer of conventional arms as well as the primary responsibility of all States to in establishing and implementing their respective national export control systems; and

5. The necessity to implement this Treaty consistently and effectively and in a universal, objective and non-discriminatory manner.

Article 1
Goals and Objectives

Cognizant of the need to prevent and combat the diversion of conventional arms into the illicit market or to unauthorized end users through the improvement of regulation on the international trade in conventional arms,

The goals and objectives of this Treaty are:

- For States Parties to establish the highest possible common standards for regulating or improving regulation of the international trade in conventional arms;

- To prevent, combat and eradicate the illicit trade in conventional arms and their diversion to illegal and unauthorized end use;

In order to:

- Contribute to international and regional peace, security and stability;

- Avoid that the international trade in conventional arms contributes to human suffering;

- Promote cooperation, transparency and responsibility of States Parties in the trade in conventional arms, thus building confidence among States Parties,

Article 2

- A. Covered Items

- 1. This Treaty shall apply to all conventional arms within the following categories:

- a. Battle Tanks

- b. Armored combat vehicles

- c. Large-caliber Artillery systems

- d. Combat aircraft

- e. Attack helicopters

- f. Warships

- g. Missiles and missile launchers

- h. Small Arms and Light Weapons

- 2. Each State Party Shall establish and Maintain a national control system to regulate the export of munitions to the extent necessary to ensure that national controls on the export of the conventional arms covered by Paragraph a1 (a)-(h) are not circumvented by the export of munitions for those conventional arms.

- 3. Each State Party shall establish and maintain a national control system to regulate the export of parts and components to the extent necessary to ensure that national controls on the export of the conventional arms covered by Paragraph A1 are not circumvented by the export of parts and components of those items.

- 4. Each State Party shall establish or update, as appropriate, and maintain a national control list that shall include the items that fall within Paragraph 1 above, as defined on a national basis, based on relevant UN instruments at a minimum. Each State Party shall publish its control list to the extent permitted by national law.

- B. Covered Activities

- 1. This Treaty shall apply to those activities of the international trade in conventional arms covered in paragraph a1 above, and set out in Articles 6-10, hereafter referred to as “transfer.”

- 2. This Treaty shall not apply to the international movement of conventional arms by a State Party or its agents for its armed forces or law enforcement authorities operating outside its national territories, provided they remain under the State Party’s ownership.

Article 3
Prohibited Transfers

A State Party shall not authorize any transfer of conventional arms within the scope of this Treaty if the transfer would violate any obligation under any measure adopted by the United Nations Security Council acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations, in particular arms embargoes.

A State Party shall not authorize any transfer of conventional arms within the scope of this Treaty if the transfer would violate its relevant international obligations, under international agreements, to which it is a Party, in particular those relating to the international transfer of, or illicit trafficking in, conventional arms.

A State Party shall not authorize a transfer of conventional arms within the scope of this Treaty for the purpose of facilitating the commission of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes constituting grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions of 1949, or serious violations of Common Article 3 of the Geneva Convention of 1949.

Article 4
National Assessment

Each State Party, in considering whether to authorize an export of conventional arms within the scope of this Treaty, shall, prior to authorization and through national control systems, make an assessment specific to the circumstances of the transfer based on the following criteria:

Whether the proposed export of conventional arms would:

Be used to commit or facilitate serious violations of international humanitarian law;
Be used to commit or facilitate serious violations of international human rights law;
Contribute to peace and security;
Be used to commit or facilitate an act constituting an offense under international conventions and protocols relating to terrorism or transnational organized crime, to which the transferring State is a Party;

In making the assessment, the transferring State Party shall apply the criteria set out in Paragraph 2 consistently and in an objective and non-discriminatory manner and in accordance with the principles set out in this Treaty, taking into account relevant factors, including information provided by the importing State.

4. In assessing the risk pursuant to Paragraph 2, the transferring State Party may also take into consideration the establishment of risk mitigation measures including confidence-building measures and jointly developed programs by the exporting and importing State.

5. If in the view of the authorizing State Party, this assessment, which would include any actions that may be taken in accordance with Paragraph 4, constitutes a substantial risk, the State Party shall not authorize the transfer.

Article 5
Additional Obligations

Each State Party, when authorizing an export, shall consider taking feasible measures, including joint actions with other States involved in the transfer, to avoid the transferred arms:
being diverted to the illicit market;
be used to commit or facilitate gender-based violence or violence against children;
become subject to corrupt practices; or
adversely impact the development of the recipient State.

Article 6
General Implementation

Each State Party shall implement this Treaty in a consistent, objective and non-discriminatory manner in accordance with the goals and objectives of this Treaty;

The implementation of this Treaty shall not prejudice previous or future obligations undertaken with regards to international instruments, provided that those obligations are consistent with the goals and objectives of this Treaty. This Treaty shall not be cited as grounds for voiding contractual obligations under defense cooperation agreements concluded by States Parties to this Treaty.

Each State Party shall take all appropriate legislative and administrative measures necessary to implement the provisions of this Treaty and designate competent national authorities in order to have an effective, transparent and predictable national control system regulating the transfer of conventional arms;

Each State Party shall establish one or more national contact points to exchange information on matters related to the implementation of this Treaty. A State Party shall notify the Implementation Support Unit (See Article 13) of its national contact point(s) and keep the information updated.

State Parties involved in a transfer of conventional arms shall, in a manner consistent with the principles of this Treaty, take appropriate measures to prevent diversion to the illicit market or to unauthorized end-users. All State Parties shall cooperate, as appropriate, with the exporting State to that end.

If a diversion is detected the State or States Parties that made the decision shall verify the State or States Parties that could be affected by such diversion, in particulate those State Parties that are involved in the transfer, without delay.

Each State Party shall take the appropriate measures, within national laws and regulations, to regulate transfers of conventional arms within the scope of the Treaty.

Article 7
Export

Each State Party shall conduct risk assessments, as detailed in Articles 4 and 5, whether to grant authorizations for the transfer of conventional arms under the scope of this Treaty. State Parties shall apply Articles 3-5 consistently, taking into account all relevant information, including the nature and potential use of the items to be transferred and the verified end-user in the country of final destination.

Each State Party shall take measures to ensure all authorizations for the export of conventional arms under the scope of the Treaty are detailed and issued prior to the export. Appropriate and relevant details of the authorization shall be made available to the importing, transit and transshipment State Parties, upon request.

Article 8
Import

Importing State Parties shall take measures to ensure that appropriate and relevant information is provided, upon request, to the exporting State Party to assist the exporting State in its criteria assessment and to assist in verifying end users.

State Parties shall put in place adequate measures that will allow them, where necessary, to monitor and control imports of items covered by the scope of the Treaty. State Parties shall also adopt appropriate measures to prevent the diversion of imported items to unauthorized end users or to the illicit market.

Importing State Parties may request, where necessary, information from the exporting State Party concerning potential authorizations.

Article 9
Brokering

Each State Party shall take the appropriate measures, within national laws and regulations, to control brokering taking place under its jurisdiction for conventional arms within the scope of this Treaty.

Article 10
Transit and Transshipment

Each State Party shall adopt appropriate legislative, administrative or other measures to monitor and control, where necessary and feasible, conventional arms covered by this Treaty that transit or transship through territory under its jurisdiction, consistent with international law with due regard for innocent passage and transit passage;

Importing and exporting States Parties shall cooperate and exchange information, where feasible and upon request, to transit and transshipment States Parties, in order to mitigate the risk of discretion;

Article 11
Reporting, Record Keeping and Transparency

Each State Party shall maintain records in accordance with its national laws and regardless of the items referred to in Article 2, Paragraph A, with regards to conventional arms authorization or exports, and where feasible of those items transferred to their territory as the final destination, or that are authorized to transit or transship their territory, respectively.

Such records may contain: quantity, value, model/type, authorized arms transfers, arms actually transferred, details of exporting State(s), recipient State(s), and end users as appropriate. Records shall be kept for a minimum of ten years, or consistent with other international commitments applicable to the State Party.

States Parties may report to the Implementation Support Unit on an annual basis any actions taken to address the diversion of conventional arms to the illicit market.

Each State Party shall, within the first year after entry into force of this Treaty for that State Party, provide an initial report to States Parties of relevant activities undertaken in order to implement this Treaty; including inter alia, domestic laws, regulations and administrative measures. States Parties shall report any new activities undertaken in order to implement this Treaty, when appropriate. Reports shall be distributed and made public by the Implementation Support Unit.

Each State Party shall submit annually to the Implementation Support Unit by 31 May a report for the preceding calendar year concerning the authorization or actual transfer of items included in Article 2, Paragraph A1. Reports shall be distributed and made public by the Implementation Support Unit. The report submitted to the Implementation Support Unit may contain the same type of information submitted by the State Party to other relevant UN bodies, including the UN Register of Conventional Arms. Reports will be consistent with national security sensitivities or be commercially sensitive.

ARTICLE 12
ENFORCEMENT

Each State Party shall adopt national legislation or other appropriate national measures regulations and policies as may be necessary to implement the obligations of this Treaty.

ARTICLE 13
IMPLEMENTATION SUPPORT UNIT

This Treaty hereby establishes an Implementation Support Unit to assist States Parties in its implementation.
The ISU shall consist of adequate staff, with necessary expertise to ensure the mandate entrusted to it can be effectively undertaken, with the core costs funded by States Parties.
The implementation Support Unit, within a minimized structure and responsible to States Parties, shall undertake the responsibilities assigned to it in this Treaty, inter alia:
Receive distribute reports, on behalf of the Depository, and make them publicly available;
Maintain and Distribute regularly to States Parties the up-to-date list of national contact points;
Facilitate the matching of offers and requests of assistance for Treaty implementation and promote international cooperation as requested;
Facilitate the work of the Conference of States Parties, including making arrangements and providing the necessary service es for meetings under this Treaty; and
Perform other duties as mandated by the Conference of States Parties.

ARTICLE 14
INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION

States Parties shall designate national points of contact to act as a liaison on matters relating to the implementation of this Treaty.
States Parties shall cooperate closely with one another, as appropriate, to enhance the implementation of this Treaty consistent with their respective security interests and legal and administrative systems.

States Parties are encouraged to facilitate international cooperation, including the exchange of information on matters of mutual interest regarding the implementation and application of this Treaty in accordance with their national legal system. Such voluntary exchange of information may include, inter alia, information on national implementation measures as well as information on specific exporters, importers and brokers and on any prosecutions brought domestically, consistent with commercial and proprietary protections and domestic laws, regulations and respective legal and administrative systems.

4. Each State Party is encouraged to maintain consultations and to share information, as appropriate, to support the implementation of this Treaty, including through their national contact points.

5. States Parties shall cooperate to enforce the provisions of this Treaty and combat breaches of this Treaty, including sharing information regarding illicit activities and actors to assist national enforcement and to counter and prevent diversion. States Parties may also exchange information on lessons learned in relation to any aspect of this Treaty, to develop best practices to assist national implementation.

Article 15
International Assistance

In fulfilling the obligation of this Treaty, States Parties may seek, inter alia, legal assistance, legislative assistance, technical assistance, institutional capacity building, material assistance or financial assistance. States, in a position to do so, shall provide such assistance. States Parties may contribute resources to a voluntary trust fund to assist requesting States Parties requiring such assistance to implement the Treaty.

States Parties shall afford one another the widest measure of assistance, consistent with their respective legal and administrative systems, in investigations, prosecutions and judicial proceedings in relation to the violations of the national measures implemented to comply with obligations under of the provisions of this Treaty.

Each State Party may offer or receive assistance, inter alia, through the United Nations international, regional, subregional or national organizations, non-governmental organizations or on a bi-lateral basis. Such assistance may include technical, financial, material and other forms of assistance as needed, upon request.

Article 16
Signature, Ratification, Acceptance, Approval or Accession

This Treaty shall be open for signature on [date] at the United Nations Headquarters in New York by all States and regional integration organizations.
This Treaty is subject to ratification, acceptance or approval of the Signatories.
This Treaty shall be open for accession by any state and regional integration organization that has not signed the Treaty.

4. The instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession shall be deposited with the Depositary.

5. The Depositary shall promptly inform all signatory and acceding States and regional integration organizations of the date of each signature, the date of deposit of each instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession and the date of the entry into force of this Treaty, and of the receipt of notices.

6. “Regional integration organization” shall mean an organization constituted by sovereign States of a given region, to which its Member States have transferred competence in respect of matters governed by this Treaty and which has been duly authorized, in accordance with its internal procedures, to sign, ratify, accept, approve or accede to it.

7. At the time of its ratification, acceptance, approval or accession, a regional integration organization shall declare the extent of its competence with respect to matters governed by this Treaty. Such organizations shall also inform the Depositary of any relevant modifications in the extent of it competence.

8. References to “State Parties” in the present Treaty shall apply to such organizations within the limits of their competence.

Article 17
Entry into Force

This Treaty shall enter into force thirty days following the date of the deposit of the sixty-fifth instrument of ratification, acceptance or approval with the Depositary.

For any State or regional integration organization that deposits its instruments of accession subsequent to the entry into force of the Treaty, the Treaty shall enter into force thirty days following the date of deposit of its instruments of accession.

For the purpose of Paragraph 1 and 2 above, any instrument deposited by a regional integration organization shall not be counted as additional to those deposited by Member States of that organization.

Article 18
Withdrawal and Duration

This Treaty shall be of unlimited duration.

Each State Party shall, in exercising its national sovereignty, have the right to withdraw from this Convention. It shall give notice of such withdrawal to all other States Parties from this Convention. It shall give notice of such withdrawal to all other States Parties and to the Depositary. The instrument of withdrawal shall include a full explanation of the reasons motivating this withdrawal.

A state shall not be discharged, by reason of its withdrawal, from the obligations arising from this treaty while it was a party to the Treaty, including any financial obligations, which may have accrued.

Article 19
Reservations

Each State party, in exercising its national sovereignty, may formulate reservations unless the reservation is incompatible with the object and purpose of this Treaty.

Article 20
Amendments

At any time after the Treaty’s entry into force, a State Party may propose an amendment to this Treaty.

Any proposed amendment shall be submitted in writing to the Depository, which will then circulate the proposal to all States Parties, not less than 180 days before next meeting of the Conference of States Parties. The amendment shall be considered at the next Conference of States Parties if a majority of States Parties notify the Implementation Support Unit that they support further consideration of the proposal no later than 180 days after its circulation by the Depositary.

Any amendment to this Treaty shall be adopted by consensus, or if consensus is not achieved, by two-thirds of the States Parties present and voting at the Conference of States Parties. The Depositary shall communicate any amendment to all States Parties.

A proposed amendment adopted in accordance with Paragraph 3 of this Article shall enter into force for all States Parties to the Treaty that have accepted it, upon deposit with the Depositary. Thereafter, it shall enter into force for any remaining State Party on the date of deposit of its instrument of accession.

Article 21
Conference of States Parties

The Conference of States Parties shall be convened not later than once a year following the entry into force of this Treaty. The Conference of States Parties shall adopt rules of procedure and rules governing its activities, including the frequency of meetings and rules concerning payment of expenses incurred in carrying out those activities.

The Conference of States Parties shall:
a. Consider and adopt recommendations regarding the implementation of this Treaty, in particular the promotion of its universality; TR

b. Consider amendments to this Treaty;

c. Consider and decide the work and budget of the Implementation Support Unit;

d. Consider the establishment of any subsidiary bodies as may be necessary to improve the functioning of the Treaty;

e. Perform any other function consistent with this Treaty.

3. If circumstances merit, an exceptional meeting of the State Parties may be convened if required and resources allow.

Article 22
Dispute Settlement

States Parties shall consult and cooperate with each other to settle any dispute that may arise with regard to the interpretation or application of this Treaty.
States Parties shall settle any dispute between them concerning the interpretation or application of this Treat though negotiations or other peaceful means of the Parties mutual choice.
States Parties may pursue, by mutual consent, third party arbitration to settle any dispute between them, regarding issues concerning the implementation of this Treaty.

Article 23
Relations with States not party to this Treaty

States Parties shall apply Articles 3-5 to all transfers of conventional arms within the scope of this Treaty to those not party to this Treaty.

Article 24
Relationship with other instruments

States Parties shall have the right to enter into agreements on the trade in conventional arms with regards to the international trade in conventional arms, provided that those agreements are compatible with their obligations under this Treaty and do not undermine the objects and purposes of this Treaty.

Article 25
Depositary and Authentic Texts

The Secretary-General of the United Nations is the Depositary of this Treaty.
The original text of this Treaty, of which the Arabic, Chinese, English, Russian and Spanish texts are equally authentic (Infowars, 2012).

Title: U.N. Arms Trade Treaty Fails On U.S. Opposition After False NRA Gun Rights Threat
Date:
July 27, 2012
Source:
Huffington Post


Abstract:
One week after the Aurora, Colo., mass murder brought gun-control back to the forefront of political discourse, the Obama administration found itself faced with its first test on the issue -- and blinked.

An arms control treaty to regulate the $60 billion global business of illicit small arms trading that had worked its way through United Nations negotiating channels for several years came up at the final day of a U.N. global conference in New York on Friday. The U.S. joined Russia in objecting to a final version, with some diplomats and human rights advocates blaming the U.S. for the defeat.

As the Colorado slaughter put guns back on the agenda this week, Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) and 50 fellow senators sent a letter to President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Thursday, saying that they would vote against ratifying the treaty if it "restricts the rights of law-abiding American gun owners."

Moran, in a press release, quoted a National Rifle Association leader, who said members would "never surrender our right to keep and bear arms to the United Nations." Treaty opponent John Bolton, ex-President George W. Bush's ambassador to the U.N., wrote that gun-control advocates "hope to use restrictions on international gun sales to control gun sales at home."

Both ignore the legal principle that says no treaty can override the Constitution or U.S. laws. The Associated Press fact-checked claims by the NRA and Bolton on Friday and concluded their assertions were false.

The NRA has been "spreading lies" about the treaty, said Amnesty International spokeswoman Suzanne Trimel in an interview. "Basically, what they're saying is that the arms trade treaty will have some impact on domestic, Second Amendment gun rights. And that is just false, completely false," she said.

Human rights activists have described the treaty as a monumental step toward preventing the illicit flow of weapons to conflict-torn regions. It "creates a global background check to prevent countries and arms exporters from selling guns and military hardware to ... human rights abusers," said Suzanne Nossel, executive director of Amnesty International, in a statement Friday. "It has been in the works for more than a decade -- the Obama administration should not make itself the obstacle just as it reaches the finish line," she added.

The treaty seemed to have a good shot in 2009, when the Obama administration broke from the Bush administration's opposition and showed support.

A version of the pact presented to U.S. negotiators late Thursday appeared to satisfy their concerns, according to Amnesty International.

But early Friday, according to Amnesty, Thomas Countryman, the deputy secretary of state for international security and nonproliferation, told the negotiators that the U.S. needed more time to review the treaty. Russia, Indonesia and India voiced similar concerns.

The U.S. Mission to the U.N. did not respond to requests for comment on Friday.

Reports late on Friday indicated that the treaty was unlikely to move for at least several months. While Friday was a setback for an agreement, there is still a possibility that a draft treaty could be brought before the U.N. General Assembly and passed with two-thirds majority vote in the 193-nation body (Huffington Post, 2012).