Nigeria has called for the full implementation of arms embargos imposed by the Security Council on countries in conflict.
Nigeria made the call at the on-going preparatory committee meeting for the second UN conference to review the progress made in the implementation of the programme of action to prevent, combat and eradicate indiscriminate circulation of Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) on Wednesday at the UN headquarters in New York.
The UN Correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Chuka Udedibia, a top officialof Nigerian Embassy in The Hague, presented the nation’s position at the meeting.
The country noted that small arms and light weapons were increasingly being used for organised crime, terrorism and armed insurgency in peaceful neighbouring states, particularly in Africa.
It also noted that the non-implementation of the arms embargoes had resulted in an unending cycle of violence that had continued to stall economic growth and development in the affected states.
“It is important that the forthcoming Review Conference ensures that transfer of small arms is limited to governments and licenced agents for use in national defence, maintenance of domestic law and order, and for UN-mandated peacekeeping missions or similar activities.
“Concrete efforts should be made at the next Review Conference to ensure non-accessibility of illicit SALW to non-State actors as a new norm for the global community,” he said.
The nation stated that there was the need to pay particular attention to the link between illicit proliferation of SALW and illicit exploitation of natural resources of states affected by conflicts resulting from such exploitation.
It said that for a successful assessment of progress of UNPoA, it would be necessary to know in terms of figures whether more or illicit SALWs were proliferated between 2006 and 2012, or less.
According to Nigeria, the outcome of this enquiry will determine the steps that should be taken by states to address the issue.
“This approach has contributed immensely to the substantial progress made by the Ottawa Convention on land mines towards the elimination mines worldwide, and substantial reduction in the number of victims of land mines,” Mr. Udedibia said.
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