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President Donald Trump has unsubscribed from a historic international agreement intended to limit the flow of weapons to potential human rights abusers, even though the United States has, for years, been accused of violating the treaty.

美國總統唐納德 特朗普拒絕簽署一項旨在限制武器流向潛在侵犯人權者的歷史性國際協議,盡管美國多年來一直被控違反該條約。

Trump announced Friday during a conference for the National Rifle Association that he would remove the U.S. signature from the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The controversial firearms advocacy organization and its lobbying arm, the Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) vehemently opposed the ATT when it was signed by former President Barack Obama in 2014.


Echoing conservative criticism of the treaty, the president vowed to "never surrender American sovereignty to anyone" nor to "allow foreign bureaucrats to trample on your Second Amendment freedom."


"That is why my administration will never ratify the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty," Trump said. "I hope you're happy."


The move was met with cheers among the audience, but widely criticized by human rights groups that saw the decision to withdraw from ATT as exacerbating the already unparalleled level of U.S. weapons sales around the world. As previous reports have indicated, some of these sales may already have violated the treaty.


The U.S. and Saudi Arabia have also been implicated in the ongoing conflict in Yemen. Trump recently vetoed a landmark congressional effort to block the Pentagon from supporting Riyadh in its war against a Zaidi Shiite Muslim group known as Ansar Allah, or the Houthis. U.S. munitions supplied to Saudi Arabia have been tied to attacks that killed civilians, and a CNN investigation released in February found multiple instances of U.S.-supplied mine-resistant armored vehicles and anti-tank guided missiles being passed on to Islamist militias backed by Saudi Arabia and its ally, the United Arab Emirates.


The U.S. accounted for roughly 36 percent of the world's arms sales between 2014 and 2018. Most of these weapons went to the Middle East, according to a report released in March by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. While it was unclear if dropping out of the Arms Trade Treaty would further inflate these figures, Amnesty International USA Deputy Director for Advocacy and Government Relations Adotei Akwei condemned Trump's announced move as "misguided blow to efforts to promote international peace and security" and challenged the president's reason for leaving the deal.

2014年至2018年,美國在全球武器銷售中約占36%。斯德哥爾摩國際和平研究所今年3月發布的一份報告顯示,這些武器大多運往中東。雖然目前還不清楚如果退出《武器貿易條約》是否將進一步抬高這些數據,但國際特赦組織美國宣傳和政府關系副主任阿多蒂 阿奎因譴責特朗普宣布此舉是“對促進國際和平與安全努力的打擊”,并質疑特朗普退出條約的理由。

"The treaty requires governments to assess the risk of violations of international human rights and humanitarian law before they authorize an arms deal in order to prevent weapons from being irresponsibly used in brutal conflicts, by organized crime or funneled to terrorists," Akwei said in a statement sent to Newsweek. "It in no way interferes with the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees U.S. citizens the right to bear arms."


The ATT was ratified by 101 countries, including the entirety of the EU. An additional 34, including the U.S., have signed the treaty but not officially ratified the agreement. Among the dozens more world powers who neither signed nor ratified were China, India, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia and Syria.