Are you up in arms yet? The countdown is on
As the red-tops are reminding us daily, we have now less than 100 days to go before the London Olympics begin: 77 today to be precise.
One countdown which is not featured on the top of the tabloids (or any paper for that matter) is the one which tells us the number of days before one of the most crucial set of discussions at the United Nations this year begin: final negotiations for an international arms trade treaty.
The need to control the arms trade treaty is not in itself a heavily reported issue, but the dire consequences of an unregulated global arms trade are highlighted on a daily basis on most news agendas. You only have to read on the BBC today how an elderly man has walked 30 kilometres from the Masisi hills with his mattress and a suitcase because of the outbreak of war in his home village. He said: "This is war, the same war all over again, but even worse, with more shooting that is scaring us even more."
While the Daily Mail has some distressing images of the ‘carnage’ that occurred as a result of yesterday recent massive bomb explosions in Damascus that killed 55 people killed and severely wounded hundreds of others: again another stark reminder of the devastation caused when weapons end up in the wrong hands.
It’s clear to see that the arms trade is out of control. With 1500 people dying every day as a result of armed violence, there is a massive need for governments to regulate this trade, effectively.
We haven’t got long now before governments meet in July. We want to make sure we’re sending the UK Government the strongest signal we possibly can that we want an arms trade treaty which has human rights at its core. One which ensures that no weapons will be supplied in circumstances where there is a substantial risk that they will be used to commit human rights atrocities. Judging by the scenes of devastation reported in the news it’s easy to see why.
If you want to help us send this message to our government just click here and find out how you can write to your MP about it.
Time is really of the essence here. For more information about our arms campaign, visit www.amnesty.org.uk/arms or follow what's going on on Twitter via #armstreaty
Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.