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"[Arms Control Today] has become indispensable! I think it is the combination of the critical period we are in and the quality of the product. I found myself reading the May issue from cover to cover."

– Frank von Hippel
Co-Director of Program on Science and Global Security, Princeton University
Small Arms Review Conference Sets Plan
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Guns seized from criminals by the Brazilian armed forces are crushed June 20 at a military base in Rio de Janeiro. The weapons were part of a large cache that had been stored as evidence. (Photo: Carl De Souza/AFP/Getty Images)The 143 states participating in the third review conference on the 2001 UN Program of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons adopted on June 30 a plan for implementing the international accord and its weapons tracking framework, known as the International Tracing Instrument.

The meeting’s outcome document set precedent by explicitly addressing ammunition, which a small minority of members, including the United States, had blocked in the past. Although the program of action and its outcome document are not legally binding, it is possible that the reference to ammunition may contribute to normalizing its inclusion in other multilateral work on small arms and light weapons control.—TRUSHAA CASTELINO