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UN Guns Treaty: 7 Facts About Controversial United Nations Arms Accord

Image: UN Guns Treaty: 7 Facts About Controversial United Nations Arms Accord
US Secretary of State John Kerry signs the UN Arms Trade Treaty during the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly United Nations headquarters in New York City, New York, September 25, 2013. (Andrew Gombert/EPA/Landov)

By    |   Sunday, 25 Jan 2015 01:50 PM

The UN guns treaty, technically named the Arms Trade Treaty, took effect Dec. 24, 2014, and while not yet ratified by the United States Senate, pro-gun groups are concerned about its implications for gun control.

These seven parts of the treaty, among others, are upsetting to pro-gun advocates:
  1. It will hamper gun trade further (Article 7)
  2. Mandates the creation of a national gun registry (Article 5, Section 2)
  3. Mandates control of firearms (Article 5)
  4. Mandates control of ammunition (Article 3)
  5. Mandates regulation of gun parts (Article 4)
  6. National gun registry must be made available to all members of the UN General Assembly (Article 5, Section 4)
  7. Limits ability of gun stores to sell firearms (Article 10)
While all of those points may upset Second Amendment supporters, a closer look at a few of the facts about the new United Nations guns treaty helps to understand them better.

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In 2012, National Rifle Association CEO and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre said, “American freedom cannot and will not bend to the will of the world that wants a lesser standard of freedom. … The UN’s policy, the end result of it, is turn over all your personal protection and your guns to the government and the government will protect you. It’s the most extreme imaginable.”

LaPierre said the treaty included “every rifle, every shotgun, every handgun, it includes all ammunition, and the UN has consistently refused to recognize the legitimacy of a firearm in any individual citizen’s hand, anywhere in the world, including the United States of America.”

According to the UN guns treaty, “Each State Party shall establish and maintain a national control system, including a national control list, in order to implement the provisions of this Treaty. Each State Party is encouraged to include in those records: the quantity, value, model/type, authorized international transfers of conventional arms covered under Article 2 (1), conventional arms actually transferred, details of exporting State(s), importing State(s), transit and trans-shipment State(s), and end users, as appropriate.”

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This means that a national gun registry, a big fear of gun supporters and an infringement on Second Amendment rights, may be a possibility through this treaty, according to the NRA.

A national gun registry is taken a step further by mandating that each nation’s registry list be made public. Article 5, Section 4, of the treaty states, “Each State Party, pursuant to its national laws, shall provide its national control list to the Secretariat, which shall make it available to other States Parties. States Parties are encouraged to make their control lists publicly available.”

Signees to the UN guns treaty will have to give their lists of gun owners to the secretary of the UN, and are further encouraged to make their lists public for everyone to see.

By law, the U.S. can’t enact a treaty without the Senate voting a two-thirds majority in support. Until the vote happens on this treaty, these laws won’t affect American arms trade.

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

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The UN guns treaty, technically named the Arms Trade Treaty, took effect Dec. 24, 2014, and while not yet ratified by the United States Senate, pro-gun groups are concerned about its implications for gun control.
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