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UN Guns Treaty: When It Goes Into Effect, and How It Changes America's Firearms Laws

Image: UN Guns Treaty: When It Goes Into Effect, and How It Changes America's Firearms Laws
Photo illustration. (Karen Bleir/AFP/Getty Images, file)

By    |   Sunday, 25 Jan 2015 03:43 PM

The guns treaty has been passed by the UN and is ready to go into effect across the world. Only Iran, Syria, and North Korea opposed the treaty when it passed in the organization’s general assembly in April 2013.

The treaty, which seeks to prevent and control the illicit trade of weapons while regulating the international trade of them, includes measures such as creating a national gun registry; mandating control of firearms and ammunition; regulating the manufacture of gun parts; and limiting stores' ability to sell firearms.

So what does this treaty, formally called the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty, mean for Americans and their right to bear arms? Gun rights advocates have said their Second Amendment rights will be infringed upon.

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“The UN Arms Trade Treaty is an attempt by other countries — including some despotic regimes — to try and infringe on our constitutional rights,” Catherine Mortensen, spokeswoman for the National Rifle Association, told TheBlaze. “While the NRA and a bipartisan majority of pro-gun Senators have succeeded in blocking this treaty’s ratification in the United States, this treaty is a very real threat.”

Although the treaty presents a threat to gun rights advocates, TheBlaze reported that it is unlikely to pass the U.S. Senate. For any UN treaty to have any effect on American laws, it must first be ratified by a two-thirds majority of the Senate.

Mortensen told TheBlaze that the NRA is still wary of the possibility of an executive order by President Barack Obama.

Sens. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and James Inhofe (R-Okla.) have actively fought against Senate ratification of the UN treaty. In a letter to President Obama, the two senators wrote “it is not in the national interest of the United States for the Senate to give its advice and consent to this treaty.”

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In an issue brief, the Heritage Foundation reported that the treaty “will come into force for its signatories 90 days after it is ratified by the fiftieth national signatory.” That occurred in late 2014. 

“The ATT is binding only on those nations that have fully ratified it, but its advocates are starting to make a new claim: that, after it receives its fiftieth ratification, it will become international law that will presumptively apply to the United States,” The Heritage Foundation’s report said.

“In the coming year, Congress should hold hearings to reveal the full extent of the administration’s implementation of the treaty and ensure that the U.S. is not slowly pulled into compliance with it, as the activists desire.”

This article does not constitute legal advice. Check the current gun laws before purchasing or traveling with a firearm.

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So what does this UN guns treaty, formally called the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty, mean for Americans and their right to bear arms? Gun rights advocates have said their Second Amendment rights will be infringed upon.
un, guns, treaty, changes, america, laws
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2015-43-25
Sunday, 25 Jan 2015 03:43 PM
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