logo CELACThe Heads of State and Government of Latin America and the Caribbean, meeting in Costa Rica, on January 28 and 29, 2015, in the framework of the Third Summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC):

1. Reiterate the urgent need to prevent, combat and eradicate the illicit manufacturing of and illicit trafficking in small arms and light weapons, their parts, components and ammunitions.

2. Acknowledge that the illicit manufacture, transfer and circulation of small arms and light weapons, their parts, components and ammunitions. their excessive accumulation and their uncontrolled spread in many regions of the world, which have a wide range of humanitarian and socio-economic consequences and pose serious threats to peace, reconciliation, safety, security, stability and sustainable development in many levels.

3. Reaffirm the relevance and crucial importance of the United Nations Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eliminate the Illicit Traffic of Small Arms and Light Weapons (UNPoA) in all its aspects as the global framework to prevent, combat and eliminate the illicit trade of such weapons; and reiterate our commitment to its full and effective implementation;

4. Emphasize that, in the framework of this Programme of Action, work must continue to be done at the multilateral level towards the adoption of legallybinding instruments on marking, tracing, illicit brokering, in order to prevent the diversion to the illicit market of small arms and light weapons, their parts, components and ammunitions.

5. In this regard, we reiterate the importance of the International Instrument to Enable States to Identify and Trace, in a Timely and Reliable Manner, Illicit Small Arms and Light Weapons (ITI).

6. Take note of the outcome of the Fifth Biennial Meeting of the UNPoA, which was held in June 2014, at the UN headquarters in New York, and look forward to participating in the review cycle of the UNPoA for 2014-2018.

7. Underscore that the adoption of the outcome document of the Second Review Conference of the UNPoA in 2012, gives the international community a clear goal and timeline to strengthen its efforts to prevent, combat and eradicate the illicit trade of small arms and light weapons.

8. Recognize the value of comprehensively addressing the trans-border illicit trade of small arms and light weapons their parts, components and ammunitions, with full respect for each State’s sovereignty.

9. Recognize as well the need to continue empowering public national and regional security institutions, in accordance with their respective constitutional and legal systems, aiming at strengthening the necessary national and regional capacities to prevent, combat and eliminate the illicit trade of small arms and light weapons their parts, components and ammunition, in the areas such as the legislative, border control, and forensic analysis, among others, as well as transnational organized crime.

10. Highlight the importance to strengthen regional and international cooperation to prevent, combat and eradicate illicit manufacturing and illicit trafficking of small and light weapons, their parts, components and ammunitions.

11. Reaffirm our support to the CELAC Working Group on crime of illicit trafficking of small arms and light weapons and their ammunition. This Working Group has the mandate to study comprehensively this issue, in order to generate proposals for mechanisms and procedures that will allow us to better coordinate our efforts in a more effective way, on the basis of full respect for international law and principles enshrined in the United Nations Charter, to strengthening the prevention and combat of illicit traffic in this category of weapons, for the benefit of the citizen security.

12. Expect that the Arms Trade Treaty, the first multilateral legally binding instrument on the arms trade, which includes small arms and light weapons in its scope, will contribute to provide an effective response to the serious consequences of illicit trafficking and non-regulated trade in arms to many people and States, in particular through the diversion of arms to non-state actors, unauthorized users, often linked to transnational organized crime and to drug-trafficking. Also expect that this Treaty could contribute to the prevention of armed conflict, armed violence and violations of international law. At the same time, in the light of the entry into force of the Treaty in December 2014, we invoke the treaty is applied in a balanced, transparent and objective manner, respecting the sovereign right of all states to ensure their self-defense, in accordance Article 51 of the United Nations Charter. Recognize the wish of Mexico to host in 2015 the First Conference of State Parties (CSP1) to the Arms Trade Treaty and to highlight its leadership during the preparatory process for this session, as well as the aspiration of Trinidad and Tobago to be the headquarters of the Secretariat of the said instrument and its intention to host the First Preparatory meeting towards the First Conference of State Parties.

13. With reference to arms with humanitarian impact, we recall with appreciation the Declaration of Central America as a anti-personnel mine-free zone, and take note the Declaration of Maputo+15 adopted at the Third Review Conference of this Treaty in June 2014.

14. Welcome the efforts of Colombia – country that ranks second in the world in the number of new victims caused by the use of these devices- by hosting the Global Conference on the Assistance to Victims and Survivors of Landmines and other explosive remnants of war in the context of the disability rights and other areas: Building bridges between worlds, in Medellin, Colombia, on April 3rd and 4th, 2014, which was attended by a large group of people in the region and managed to promote awareness on assistance to the victims, beyond the human rights approach embodied in the Convention on the prohibition of the use, stockpiling, production and transfer of anti-personnel mines and on their destruction.

15. Take note of the calling to the Conference of the State Parties of Anti-personnel mines Convention at the end of 2016, in Santiago, Chile, which reflects the commitment of the States Parties to the Convention with the destruction of stockpiled anti-personnel mines, to ban their use, to the humanitarian demining of mine areas, to the prevention and awareness programmes for the population and to assist the victims affected by these devices.

16. Support international efforts to reduce the suffering caused by cluster munitions and by their use against civilian populations, in clear violation of international humanitarian law. Likewise we recognize the recent accession of Belize to the Cluster Ammunition Convention and the establishment of Central America as a cluster ammunition free zone during the Fifth Meeting of States Parties to the Convention on Cluster Munitions, held in San José, Costa Rica, in September 2014. In this regard, we take note of the efforts of Costa Rica as Presidency of the V Meeting of States Parties of the Convention on Cluster Munitions to reach the figure of 100 States Parties towards the I Review Conference of the Convention to be held in September 2015, in Dubrovnik, Croatia.

17. Highlight the important work undertaken by the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) in the promotion of peace, disarmament and development, including assistance provided to the countries of the region to strengthen national capabilities and apply disarmament measures in various areas.

18. Highlight likewise that these efforts to prevent, combat and eliminate the illicit traffic of small arms and light weapons are without prejudice to the priorities accorded to nuclear disarmament and weapons of mass destruction.

Belén, Costa Rica, January 29th, 2015

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