3 Jul 2012

Oxfam confident about UN arms treaty

3:07 pm on 3 July 2012

Oxfam New Zealand's representative at the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty talks in New York says he is very confident an effective agreement will be reached in the month-long final negotiations.

The Treaty aims to place controls on the illicit guns trade.

Oxfam's Luke Roughton says the treaty is very important for a region like the Pacific where the availibility of illegal guns has caused havoc in Solomon Islands, Bougainville and the Highlands of Papua New Guinea.

He says the push for a treaty has been a long time coming and there is now the critical mass needed to agree on an effective treaty.

"Really what they have to decide is whether they are going to stand up for a Treaty with a humanitarian imperative that will save lives or a Treaty which protects the interests of arms brokers who act unscrupulously and I don't believe that any state when making that decision will arrive at the latter. I don't think there is any excuse for that."

Luke Roughton of Oxfam New Zealand