The Forum on the Arms Trade is a network of civil society experts and a point of contact for strengthening public efforts to address the humanitarian, economic and other implications of arms transfers, security assistance, and weapons use. Managed from Washington DC, the Forum provides a venue for bringing its community's wide-ranging expertise together to amplify and strengthen its work, while also offering government and media members a one-stop resource for the latest information, analysis, and best contacts. Forum-listed experts are located around the world and work on diverse topics including human rights, development, arms control, humanitarian disarmament, cybersecurity, arms and the environment, anti-corruption, and related fields.
Resource Page - Int'l Trade of Firearms & Ammunition: Move to Commerce Control
BREAKING - December 9, the conference version of the National Defense Authorization Act does not retain the amendment that would prohibit changes to firearms export rules (see conference report). But on December 10, Senator Menendez again requested a hold be places (see letter).
On February 4, 2019, Congress was notified of final rules to transfer of some items on US Munitions List (USML) categories I-III to the Commerce Control List (CCL), starting a 30-day review period. Legislation to block the change has now been introduced in both the Senate and the House and a hold placed delaying its implementation. A hearing on this topic is was held Tuesday, March 26, in the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations. On May 14, more than 100 organizations sent a letter to Congress opposing the changes.
On July 11, the House added an amendment (#10) to the NDAA, which would block these changes, by a vote of 225 to 205. On July 12, the House passed the full NDAA by a vote of 220 to 197, but the NDAA has since remained stalled in conference. The Senate version did not contain this provision. On October 24, 44 organizations delivered a letter calling for retention of this amendment in the NDAA, along with many others.
November 12, Congressional staff have been briefed on Trump administration plans to move these rules forward.
The proposed rule was published on May 24 and closed for public comment on July 9, 2018.
See resource for concerns expressed and more information.
Arms Supplies: Turkey's Military Actions in Syria
Worries about harm to civilians and misuse of weapons are some of the concerns raised as a number of countries are taking action to limit future weapons supplied to Turkey and Congressional leaders seek similar measures in response to Turkey's military actions in Syria. See resource page..
Highlighting publications in which Forum-listed experts were involved. Inclusion on the Forum on the Arms Trade expert list does not indicate agreement with or endorsement of the opinions of others.
Allison Pytlak+, "Breaking Silos, Building Community," Cyber Peace and Security Monitor vol. 1, no. 5, Reaching Critical Will, December 9, 2019.
Mark Bromley+, "Detecting, investigating and prosecuting export control violations: European perspectives on key challenges and good practices," SIPRI, December 2019.
Aude Fleurant+, "The SIPRI Top 100 arms-producing and military services companies, 2018," December 2019.
Dan Gettinger, "Turkey’s military drones: an export product that’s disrupting NATO," Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, December 6, 2019.
Jeff Abramson, "Move Signaled for Firearm Exports Changes," Arms Control Today," December 4, 2019.
Nils Duquet, "Reviewing the EU Common Position on arms exports: whither EU arms transfer controls?," Flemish Peace Institute, December 3, 2019.
Allison Pytlak, "The Value of Multi-Stakeholderism," Cyber Peace and Security Monitor vol. 1, no. 4, December 2, 2019.
Bonnie Docherty+, "A Commitment to Civilians: Precedent for a Political Declaration on Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas," International Human Rights Clinic, November 2019.
Rasha Abdul Rahim, "The weaponisation of AI: An existential threat to human rights and dignity," in Artificial intelligence: Human rights, social justice and development, Global Information Society Watch 2019, November 28, 2019.
Martin Butcher, "The Gendered Impact of Explosive Weapons Use in Populated Areas in Yemen," Oxfam Briefing Paper, November 26, 2019.
Mary Wareham and Yeshua Moser-Puangsuwan+, "Landmine Monitor 2019," Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor, ICBL, November 21, 2019.
Cesar Jaramillo, "Collateral Damage No More: Urban Conflict, Explosive Weapons, and a Case Study in Multilateral Norm Building," Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, November 21, 2019.
Mary Wareham, "Ringing the Alarm on Killer Robots," Human Rights Watch, November 20, 2019.
Mary Wareham, "Landmine stockpiles and their destruction," in The Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention: Twenty Years of Saving Lives and Preventing Indiscriminate Harm, UN Occasional Paper 34, November 2019.
Wim Zwijnenburg, "Solving the jigsaw of conflict-related environmental damage: Utilizing open-source analysis to improve research into environmental health risks," Journal of Public Health, November 19, 2019.
Bonnie Docherty, "Incendiary Weapons Draw Widespread Condemnation," Human Rights Watch, November 18, 2019.
Jeff Abramson, "Trump administration's dangerous plan to make it easier to export assault weapons," CNN, November 18, 2019.
Jeff Abramson, "Democrats Should Debate Arms Policy, Not Just Impeachment," Defense One, November 18, 2019.
William Hartung, "America’s Arms Sales Addiction: The 50-Year History of U.S. Dominance of the Middle Eastern Arms Trade," TomDispatch, November 18, 2019.
Bonnie Docherty+, "Elements of a Treaty to Ban Fully Autonmous Weapons," CCW Report, vol. 7, no. 8, November 17, 2019
Bonnie Docherty, "Incendiary Weapons," CCW Report, vol. 7, no. 8, November 17, 2019
Ray Acheson, "The CCW is still standing, but to what end?" CCW Report, vol. 7, no. 8, November 17, 2019
John Lindsay-Poland+, "Stemming the guns of massacre in Mexico," Salt Lake Tribune, November 16, 2019.
Doug Weir+, "Brexit, chemicals legislation and the UK defence sector," Conflict and Environment Observatory, November 14, 2019.
John Lindsay-Poland+, "Italy’s contribution to the Mexican powder keg," Stop U.S. Arms to Mexico, November 12, 2019.
John Lindsay-Poland, "Armas y matanzas en México," NEXOS, November 11, 2019.
Bonnie Docherty, "Standing Firm against Incendiary Weapons: Memorandum to Delegates of the Meeting of States Parties to the Convention on Conventional Weapons," Human Rights Watch and IHRC, November 11, 2019.
Frank Slijper, "Slippery Slope: The arms industry and increasingly autonomous weapons," PAX, November 11, 2019.
Doug Weir, "Environment," First Committee Monitor, vol. 17, no. 6, November 11, 2019.
Laura Boillot, "Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas," First Committee Monitor, vol. 17, no. 6, November 11, 2019.
Mary Wareham, "Fully Autonomous Weapons," First Committee Monitor, vol. 17, no. 6, November 11, 2019.
Allison Pytlak, "Cyber," First Committee Monitor, vol. 17, no. 6, November 11, 2019.
Ray Acheson, "The unbearable heaviness of hypocrisy," First Committee Monitor, vol. 17, no. 6, November 11, 2019.
Josh Ruebner, "Israel: the country that loves US handouts but hates US criticism," TheNewArab, November 8, 2019.
Scott Paul, "7 ways to sell US arms abroad without losing your soul," Oxfam, November 7, 2019.
Rachel Stohl, Shannon Dick, "Global Arms Trade: Setting an Example for Responsible Policy," Stimson Center issue brief, November 7, 2019.
Wim Zwijnenburg, "The Environment Has Become a Hostage to Armed Conflict," New Security Beat, Wilson Center, November 7, 2019.
Rachel Stohl+, "Trump administration turns its back on child soldiers again," The Hill, November 4, 2019.
Jeff Abramson, "Explosive Weapons Declaration Gains Momentum," Arms Control Today, vol. 49, no. 9, November 4, 2019.
Allison Pytlak+, "Armed Drones" First Committee Monitor, vol. 17, no. 5, November 4, 2019.
View the full list of recent and past publications featuring Forum on the Arms Trade-listed experts.
New Partnership - DC area high school debate
December 2 – The Washington Urban Debate League (WUDL) and the Forum on the Arms Trade announced a partnership to help local urban high and middle school students grapple with this year's national debate topic.
U.S. Presidential Election 2020 - Candidate Positions
Quotes and other resources identifying positions of 21 candidates for U.S. President on three key arms trade issues: Arms Trade Treaty; arms to Saudi-led coalition; firearms export oversight. Will be expanded and updated regularly. See resource.
New FMS notifications: November 20 - Australia - $245 million for 450 JCREW I1B1 anti-IED systems New Zealand - $1.4 billion for 5 C-130J transport aircraft November 19 India - $1.0210 billion for 13 Mk 45 naval guns and ammunition - Morocco - $4.25 billion for 36 AH-64E Apache attack helicopters and weapons - November 7 - United Arab Emirates - $830.3 million for 10 Chinook cargo helicopters October 30 - Croatia - $115 million for two (2) UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters October 29 - Japan - $4.5 billion to upgrade of up to ninety-eight (98) F-15J October 22 - Bahrain - $150 million to refurbish a retired Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate for transfer October 17 - South Korea $253 million for 120 AIM-120C-7/C-8 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles (AMRAAM) October 10 - Kuwait $281 million for M88A2 HERCULES recovery vehicles Tunisia - $234 million for 12 T-6C Texan II aircraft October 3 - Ukraine $39.2 million for 150 Javelin missiles October 1 - Japan $140 million AEGIS follow-on support September 24 - Thailand $400 million 8 light attack helicopters Qatar $86 million for head of state aircraft protection September 11 - Morocco $776 million for 2400+ TOW (anti-tank) missiles; $209 million for 6000+ bombs September 10 - Poland $6.5 billion for 32 F-35s August 27 - Japan $3.295 billion for SM-3 Block IIA missiles South Korea $72 million for torpedoes Hungary $500 million for air-to-air missiles Lithuania $170.8 million light tactical vehicles Denmark $200 million for Sonar and Sonobuoys August 20 - Taiwan $8 billion for F-16 aircraft August 7 - South Korea $800 million for multi-mission helicopters July 29 - South Korea $950 million for support to RQ-4 Block 30 remotely piloted aircraft Egypt $544 million for ship support Canada $44 million for radio syems July 26 - India $670 million for C-17 support Pakistan $125 million for F-16 support Thailand $175 million for 60 Stryker infantry carriers July 12 - Greece $600 million for 7 MH-60R helicopters Germany $401 million for 50 PAC-3 missiles July 8 - Taiwan $2 billion for Abrams tanks and $223.56 million for Stinger missiles see resource
2020 Annual Conference
U.S. Arms Sales to Taiwan
After months of anticipation, on August 20, 2019, the Trump administration formally notified Congress of the possible sale of 66 F-16 fighter aircraft to Taiwan for $8 billion, drawing greater attention to U.S.-Taiwan arms sales, especially as U.S.-China trade talks appeared to be faltering. See resource page.
High School Debate '19-20
Check our resource page designed to help U.S. high school debate participants in the current national series focused on the arms trade.
"Arms Trade FAQ" videos
See transcripts and more details here.
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Partners are not responsible for the work of the Forum nor does partnership indicate agreement with or endorsement of the opinions of
other partners, listed experts, or resources produced by the Forum.
other partners, listed experts, or resources produced by the Forum.