The treaty prohibits nations from exporting conventional weapons in violation of arms embargoes.
The United Nation on Tuesday voted overwhelmingly to pass the first-ever treaty to regulate global trade in conventional weapons.
The 193-nation General Assembly approved the treaty that seeks to regulate the $70 billion international business in conventional arms ranging from light weapons to battle tanks and warships. 154 countries voted in favor, 3 against and 23 abstentions.
The treaty was put to vote after Iran, North Korea and Syria blocked an earlier attempt at a consensus last week, contending that the treaty was drafted to disfavour them.
The vote result showed several other countries were also uncomfortable with the treaty. The pact will be open for signature June 3 and will enter into force 90 days after the 50th signatory ratifies it.
China and Russia, which is the world’s second-biggest arms exporter, joined Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua and other countries in abstaining. A number of countries complained that the treaty favors exporting over importing states.
The United States, the world’s No. 1 arms exporter, said it would vote in favor of the treaty despite opposition from the National Rifle Association, a powerful U.S. pro-gun lobbying group.
The treaty prohibits member nations from exporting conventional weapons in violation of arms embargoes, or weapons that would be used for acts of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes or terrorism.
It also requires states to prevent conventional weapons reaching the black market. Diplomats have worked for nearly a decade to agree on a set of principles to control the flow of such arms.
Attempts to agree the treaty last year broke down after the US, followed by Russia and China, said they needed more time to consider the issues.
Last week, a UN treaty-drafting conference failed to reach consensus after objections from Syria, Iran and North Korea.
Iran said the treaty was full of flaws and loopholes and North Korea said it was unbalanced.
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