Control Arms

Photo credit: Amnesty International Aotearoa NZ

Lack of controls on the arms trade fuels conflict, poverty and human rights abuses worldwide.

Oxfam is a part of the Control Arms campaign, a global coalition demanding governments toughen up controls on the arms trade and introduce an international Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) that stop arms being sold to those likely to misuse them.

In 2013, history was made as the Arms Trade Treaty - the first agreement to control global arms sales - received an overwhelming 'yes' vote at the United Nations in New York. In September 2014,  New Zealand became the 45th country to ratify the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT).

This momentous Treaty is the culmination of more than ten years of campaigning to rein in the irresponsible trade in arms that causes so much human suffering.

It could not have happened without the work of Oxfam supporters, and immense efforts from Control Arms partners and governments around the world.

A clear voice from New Zealand

Between Oxfam, Amnesty International NZ and the New Zealand Red Cross, we gathered more than 9000 signatures supporting a motion calling on every government to support the establishment of an Arms Trade Treaty. In particular, we called on Pacific governments to honour their pledge to jointly support such an ATT. The signatures were handed to the NZ government.

Through our advocacy work we succeeded in getting a motion in support of the ATT passed unanimously through Parliament. Check out the first minute of this video:


In pictures: Oxfam's One Shot Arms Trade Treaty campaign



Arms Trade Treaty: What we called for

Oxfam and our partners believe an Arms Trade Treaty must hold governments accountable. It must be based on states’ existing legal obligations to international humanitarianlaw and UN Charters.

Our position

Oxfam New Zealand supports peace-building work in the Pacific

Oxfam New Zealand is working with partners in the Pacific, supporting peace-building and conflict-resolution initiatives.

Latest news

States vote for first ever Arms Trade Treaty

April 3, 2013

Campaigners today say the vote for the first ever global treaty to bring the international arms trade under control marks “an incredible moment.”

Final conference on Arms Trade Treaty

March 26, 2013

Control Arms coalition calls on Chair not to cave in to pressure from India and P5 as new text falls short

Make history

March 19, 2013

Governments from over 190 member states have a second chance to make history this month by agreeing the first ever Arms Trade Treaty, when meet in New York for two weeks of negotiations at the United Nations. An Arms Trade Treaty will control the international supply of arms and ammunition.

Latest blogs

Ka pai New Zealand

September 3, 2014

Today New Zealand became the 45th country to ratify the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), an international, legally binding agreement to regulate the global trade in conventional weapons.

Nameless victims deserve Arms Treaty

March 28, 2013

There are thousands, millions, of names we must remember. Victims of gun violence will never have the chance to speak out against the horrific and destructive consequences of the unregulated flow of arms around the world

Update from New York 4

July 30, 2012

On Friday last week we saw a very disappointing end to the ATT negotiating conference. In the final hours, when it was looking possible that consensus would be achieved on the draft Treaty text, the United States made a statement asking for more time to negotiate, effectively expressing that they would not support the adoption of the ATT during the conference. This seemed to spur on a few other countries such as Russia, North Korea, Cuba and Venezuela, who then all made similar statements to that effect.