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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 79

Are Small Arms the Real Weapons of Mass Destruction?

[b]Are Small Arms the Real Weapons of Mass Destruction?[/b]

By Thalif Deen - Inter Press Service

[b]United Nations, 12 January, (IPS):[/b] The United Nations argues that small arms -- including assault rifles, grenade launchers and sub-machine guns -- are primarily responsible for much of the death and destruction in conflicts throughout the world.

But despite the availability of over 600 million small arms in open and underground markets, there is no international treaty to control the reckless proliferation of these light weapons worldwide.

"Dinosaur bones and old postage stamps", yes, but a treaty on small arms, no, says Sarah Margon, director of Oxfam.

"No one but a criminal would knowingly sell a gun to a murderer, yet governments can sell weapons to regimes with a history of human rights violations or to countries where weapons will go to war criminals," she points out.

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