December 2015
Issue 6
Dear Friend of the Shooting Community,

Welcome to the December edition of the WFSA Newsletter.

2015 has come to a close. During this year we have faced so many challenges which threatened to harm our sector, but we have been able to defend ourselves and our common interests. 

2016 will mark the 20th anniversary of WFSA. It will certainly be a very busy year, especially in the EU where many of our members will have to fight in order to limit damages that the recently announced reopening of the Firearms Directive will inevitably cause. I am however convinced that by standing united we will finally succeed.

In the meantime, I would like to wish you a well deserved period of relaxation during the Christmas and New Year celebrations, and I hope to see you all at the WFSA Plenary Session that will be held in Nuremberg at IWA on 3rd March 2016.

Yours sincerely,

 Herbert Keusgen - WFSA President
  1. First Conference of Parties to the ATT (CSP1)
  2. UN General Assembly First Committee
  3. EU Commission proposes to amend Directive 91/477/EEC
  4. Future Prospects for the Arms Trade Treaty
  5. AEWA Sixth Meeting of Parties (MOP6)
  6. Symposium "The Sustainable Use of Lead Ammunition in Hunting and Sports Shooting: Facts and Emotions"

First Conference of State Parties to the Arms Trade Treaty (CSP1)

On August 24-27, 2015 was held in Cancun (Mexico) the First Conference of State Parties to the ATT (CSP1). 

The meeting was attended by 120 states, 67 of which are Parties to the treaty.  Fourty-one of the attendees were signatory states, and 11; Algeria, Botswana, China, Figi, the Holy See, Jordan, Kenya, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Viet Nam and Yemen, attended as non-signatory observers.

There were over 80 anti-gun NGO’s in attendance, most of which fell under the Control Arms umbrella. It was noted that most of the Control Arms representatives were interspersed amongst the developing nations, either as part of, or as advisors to their delegations. 

Following the high level segment, CSP1 was able to reach agreement on the rules of procedure, financial rules, the location of the Secretariat – Geneva, the next Secretariat – Simon D. Dladla from the Republic of South Africa, and the President for the next CSP will be Emmanuel E. Imohe of Nigeria.

The next CSP meeting will be held in Geneva in August of 2016.  There may be a smaller meeting on organizational matter in early 2016 in Geneva and there also may be a “preparatory committee” meeting in May of 2016.


European Commission proposes to amend Directive 91/477/EEC

On November 18, 2015, in reaction to the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, the European Commission published a press release announcing the strengthening of firearms control across the EU. Accompanying the release was a draft proposal amendment of Directive 91/477/EEC (already amended by Directive 2008/51/EC) on control of the acquisition and possession of weapons.
The purported aim of this proposal is to support Member States in protecting European citizens and prevent criminals and terrorists from acquiring weapons. The proposal will be presented to the EP and the whole process between Council and EP should take at least 6 months.
The pressure resulting from the proposal is very high everywhere in the EU. Some of the provisions (such as the prohibition of certain types of firearms) contained in the Commission proposal, if approved, would seriously damage our sector without providing any added value in terms of Public Security. European associations are currently working at different levels on this issue.
A public consultation has been established and the deadline of this initiative is mid-January. 

Symposium "The Sustainable Use of Lead Ammunition in Hunting and Sports Shooting: Facts and Emotions"
A significant International Symposium was organized in Brussels on 20 October 2015 by the Association of European Manufacturers of Sporting Ammunition (AFEMS) and the World Forum on Shooting Activities (WFSA).

The Symposium focused on the sustainable use of lead in ammunition and its impact on both the environment and human health. The Symposium also provided an overview of the ballistic features of both lead and non-lead ammunition and assessed the current legislation at the European and International level.

The symposium was attended by 110 delegates, including journalists, politicians, scientists, members of environmental institutions, hunting and sport shooting organizations and food agencies.

Three influential keynotes speakers from the European Parliament and the European Commission described the current position and future strategies of the European regulatory bodies, thus giving further significance to the event.

Sixteen speakers covered every conceivable aspect of lead in civilian ammunition, with presentations organized into five different panels: environment, legal issues, ballistics, human health and other issues. Three expert journalists managed the lively and animated debates which followed the presentations as well as sharing their own assessment of the issues.

The Symposium opened with a welcome address from Mr Torbjörn Lindskog (AFEMS President) who welcomed participants and introduced the first keynote speaker, Ms Natalie Pauwels (DG ENVI), who presented the EU Environment Policy priorities over the coming years.  The afternoon session was opened by Mr Herbert Keusgen (WFSA President) followed by a keynote address from Ms Renata Briano (Vice President of the EU Parliamentary Intergroup “Biodiversity, Hunting and Countryside”).

To view the official press release of the event, please click here (also available in German and Italian).

To watch the video interviews, please click here.

UN General Assembly First Committee
The UN General Assembly First Committee was held in New York from 5th October to 9th November 2015. NGOs were given the opportunity to make their statements on 16th October. WFSA President, Herbert Keusgen, attended the meeting and delivered a speech on behalf of WFSA.
President Keusgen emphasized the need for the UN to pay attention to legal firearms owners throughout the world.

Future Prospects for the Arms Trade Treaty
On 17 November 2015 in Geneva (Switzerland) WFSA attended the panel discussion "Future Prospects for the Arms Trade Treaty". This event, organized by The Graduate Institute of Geneva, was part of the Geneva Peace Week 2015.
The event was chaired by Prof. Keith Krause, Director of the Centre on Conflict, Development and Peacebuilding (CCDP). Panel Speakers were Marc Finaud, Senior Programme Advisor, Emerging Security Challenges Programme, Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP) and ATT Network Coordinator; Sarah Parker, Senior Researcher, Small Arms Survey; Himayu Shiotani, Project Manager, United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR); Takhmina Karimova, Human Rights Officer, Rule of Law and Democracy Section, Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).
The discussion focused on the role the several governmental and non-governmental stakeholders (Civil Society) active in International Geneva could play now that the ATT Secretariat is beign established in Geneva.   
According to the speakers, the main role of Civil Society will be to provide information through the ATT Network,monitoring the implementation of its obligations for both exporting and importing countries, and support governments in implementing ATT articles (i.e. Art. 7). With reference to reporting, due to the obligation for transparency, Civil Society will ensure that all the information are reported by Member States.Moreover, UNIDIR could give support in tackling arms diversion through the harmonization of the end-use/r control systems among States and post delivery cooperation (controls).

AEWA Sixth Meeting of Parties (MOP6)
On 9-14 November in Bonn (Germany) was held the AEWA Sixth Meeting of Parties (MOP6). AFEMS,  FACE and IEACS had the chance to attend as observers. 
In the weeks before the meeting the three associations worked hard in order to avoid the reintroduction the CMS resolution on the phase out of lead without mentioning the fundamental achievement of article 1: “agreeing that it is for each Party to determine whether or how to implement the recommended actions, considering the extent and type of poisoning risk”.
To read the outcome of the meeting for the issues of our interest, please click here. As you can see, there were no significant changes since the last CMS meeting held last year in Quito.
The final versions of the two resolutions will be published soon on the AEWA website.

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