Stopping Destructive Arms Proliferation: How the Arms Trade Treaty can improve peace and security by introducing the first international regulations on transfers of conventional arms

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Stopping Destructive Arms Proliferation: How the Arms Trade Treaty can improve peace and security by introducing the first international regulations on transfers of conventional arms

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Publication Bachelor thesis
Title Stopping Destructive Arms Proliferation: How the Arms Trade Treaty can improve peace and security by introducing the first international regulations on transfers of conventional arms
Author(s) Saldner, Simon
Date 2013
English abstract
This thesis explores how the newly adopted Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), the first international treaty to regulate the trade in conventional arms, can address the issue of the illegal and irresponsible proliferation of small arms and lights weapons (SALW) and improve peace and security. By far the most commonly used weapons in modern conflicts, SALW and their effects mainly on intrastate conflicts, I argue, are the most important issues for the ATT to address. Being one of the prime sources of fuel for, and even cause of, the new trend of increasingly deadly and destructive intrastate conflicts today, controlling the largely illegal and internationally unregulated SALW market would be a crucial step to improving peace and security. The thesis uses Security Dilemma theory to describe how arms and their proliferation pose threats to peace and security, while international law and regime theory is used to identify how legal action and structures of cooperation (regimes) can offer solutions to these problems. To determine to what extent the ATT can address these issues, the thesis uses a case study approach together with a content analysis of the ATT text to identify the relevant legal provisions and how they can operate in the context of the theoretical framework. The findings of this study suggest that the most important aspect of the ATT is that it imposes prohibitions on any arms transfer that risks being used to commit acts of genocide, human rights abuses and other violations of international law, or that risk leading to diversion. These provisions could be used to stop the irresponsible kinds of arms transfers that facilitate these crimes. The effects of the ATT are however largely dependent on the will of states, which will determine the effectiveness of the treaty. Nonetheless, as this thesis shows, the ATT provides tools and a legal platform that could, if utilized, have a substantial impact on these issues.
Publisher Malmö högskola/Kultur och samhälle
Pages 77
Language eng (iso)
Subject(s) Arms
Arms Trade
Arms Trade Treaty
Intrastate conflict
International law
Proliferation
Regime theory
Security dilemma
Small Arms and Light Weapons
Peace and Conflict Studies
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/15864 (link to this page)

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