A week before it opens a treaty conference to impose worldwide limitations on arms sales, the United Nations co-hosted and paid for a series of meetings involving 48 African nations and an anti-gun group that espouses much greater national and international control of firearms, including registration of small arms and ammunition.
The co-host of the gathering in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa was a multinational “civil society” network known as IANSA, which calls itself the “global movement against gun violence,” and aims to build a coordinated network of organizations “to stop the proliferation and misuse of small arms and light weapons,” and “make people safer by reducing demand for such weapons, improving firearm regulation and strengthening controls on arms transfers.”
U.S. members of the international network include Amnesty International, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, and the Law Center for Smart Gun Laws, which on its website decries a 2008 Supreme Court decision upholding the right of individual Americans to keep a gun in their home for self-defense as “radical.”
Also in attendance was Peter Woolcott, head of Australia’s U.N. mission in Geneva, who will serve as president of the 10-day round of Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) negotiations in New York. No gun rights groups were apparently invited to attend.
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