The 8th biennial meeting of states to consider the implementation of the Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (PoA) kicked off on June 27.
In her remarks, Ambassador Nguyen Phuong Tra, Deputy Permanent Representative of Vietnam to the UN, shared other states’ concern about multifaceted impacts of illegal activities related to small arms and light weapons on global security, stability, and development.
She highly valued recent efforts, including the PoA implementation, to prevent the illicit trade in small arms, pointing out the necessity to augment international cooperation on the basis of each state’s demand and resources, including in helping with capacity building.
Apart from ensuring states’ leading role in preventing, combating and eradicating the illicit trade, international cooperation in this area also needs to take into account their right of self-defence, the diplomat noted.
Tra re-affirmed Vietnam’s commitment to fully implement the PoA, adding that it has been building a legal framework that covers the management of small arms and light weapons and also taking part in relevant regional mechanisms.
At the five-day meeting, participants voiced concerns over the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons, which has a role to play in prolonging conflicts and worsening the crime situation in the world, thus negatively affecting international peace and security.
They stressed their countries’ commitment to fully and effectively implement the PoA.
In the PoA, adopted by all UN member states in 2001, they agreed to improve regulations on small arms, enhance the management over stockpiles, ensure weapons are properly marked, strengthen cooperation in weapon tracing, and encourage the engagement in international cooperation at regional and global levels.