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“The entry into force today of the Arms Trade Treaty, adopted in April 2013 by the UN General Assembly, is a landmark in the international security agenda.
The EU has been an active supporter of the principles of greater responsibility and transparency in arms trade enshrined in the Treaty.
The Treaty now needs to gain universal applicability in order to be truly effective. It also needs to be fully implemented.
In this respect, the EU has adopted a new programme through which it will support States that wish to receive assistance in strengthening their controls over arms transfers, in compliance with the Arms Trade Treaty. The EU will also continue to encourage States not yet party to the Treaty to accede to it.
All EU Member States have signed the Treaty and all ratifications will be completed shortly. I want to reaffirm the strong commitment of the EU to actively engage in the preparation for the first Conference of States Parties which will take place next year".