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UN Arms Trade Treaty Negotiations Kick Off One Day Late

  • RFE/RL

Negotiations aimed at hammering out the first-ever binding global arms trade treaty have begun at the UN headquarters, one day after they were scheduled to kick off.

The talks, which are to conclude on July 27, were delayed because of a dispute over the observer status of the Palestinian delegation.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed hope that member states would exercise "common sense" and agree to a legally binding treaty at the end of the month.

Ban also announced Argentinian Ambassador to the UN Roberto Garcia Moritan as the president presiding over the treaty negotiations.

At a press briefing prior to the conference opening, Suzanne Nossel, executive director of Amnesty International USA, said UN member states should seize the opportunity to regulate the global arms trade without distractions over political infighting.