•The Arms Trade Treaty has nothing to do with restricting the legal sale or ownership of guns within the United States. The aim of the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty is to combat the illicit international trade of arms by "tightening regulation of, and setting international standards for, the import, export and transfer of conventional weapons" in order to "close gaps in existing regional and national arms export control systems that allow weapons to pass onto the illicit market":
The Arms Trade Treaty obligates member states to monitor arms exports and ensure that weapons don't cross existing arms embargoes or end up being used for human-rights abuses, including terrorism. Member states, with the assistance of the U.N., will put into place enforceable, standardized arms import and export regulations (much like those that already exist in the U.S.) and be expected to track the destination of exports to ensure they don't end up in the wrong hands. Ideally, that means limiting the inflow of deadly weapons into places like Syria.
The text of the proposed treaty specifically "reaffirms the sovereign right and responsibility of any State to regulate and control transfers of conventional arms that take place exclusively within its territory, pursuant to its own legal or constitutional systems," so even if such a treaty came to pass, U.S. rights and laws regarding the sale and ownership of small arms would still apply within the United States.
• The Obama administration has stated that mandatory conditions for U.S. approval of such an arms trade treaty include the following:
• The Second Amendment to the Constitution must be upheld.
• There will be no restrictions on civilian possession or trade of firearms otherwise permitted by law or protected by the U.S. Constitution.
• There will be no dilution or diminishing of sovereign control over issues involving the private acquisition, ownership, or possession of firearms, which must remain matters of domestic law.
As the Wall Street Journal reported, the U.S. 'voted in favor [of the treaty only] after the Obama Administration secured its key "red line" that the treaty would have no impact on the Second Amendment. The final draft specifies "non-intervention in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction" of signatories.'
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