Small arms: Trade & brokering

Because of the immense havoc weapons and ammunition can wreak, any government that decides to export them must realize the profound international responsibility it has for every transfer it authorizes. Conversely, a government importing or procuring from national production must ensure that it will use these weapons only to provide for the safety and security of its citizens and that it has the capacity to safeguard all weapons and ammunition within its possession throughout their life cycles.

The trade in small arms is not well regulated and can be considered the least transparent of all weapons systems. In many countries, because of a lack of regulation and controls, it is too easy for small arms to fall into the hands of recipients who use them to commit violations of international humanitarian or human rights law or divert them to the illicit market through theft, leakage, corruption or pilferage.