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Schmidt, Michael

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Der Tagesspiegel - Germany | 30/07/2012

Draft version of arms trade agreement naïve

The UN conference on the first global arms trade treaty ended on Friday evening without producing results. The left-liberal Tagesspiegel is not disappointed because "the treaty would have set up global standards for a hardly foreseeable period of time that are lower than those that apply in Europe. And Europe's standards in turn are lower than those of Germany. In the name of fair competition the relatively stringent guidelines that apply here would sooner or later come under pressure from the arms industry through the treaty - and would probably have been relaxed sooner rather than later. … The envisaged agreement also suffers from an overly naïve notion of the possibilities for effective control. Would it have prevented the Denver shooter from accumulating his arsenal of weapons? No, because the Americans' national identity resolutely opposes this. Would it have prevented Libyan weapons getting to rebels and criminals in neighbouring states? No, because weapons control hinges on a functioning state that counts weapons and monitors the trade in them."

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