MINSK, 11 April (BelTA) - The unchecked flooding of weapons into certain states is a direct way to escalation of tensions, Belarusian Deputy Foreign Minister Yuri Ambrazevich said as he addressed a meeting of the UN Security Council "Threats to international peace and security: Risks stemming from violations of the agreements regulating the export of weapons and military equipment", BelTA has learned.
According to the United Nations, firearms kill a quarter of a million people annually. “It is not for nothing that small arms and light weapons are called a new type of ‘weapon of mass destruction' due to the number of victims. Way back UN Secretary General Kofi Annan noted in one of his reports that the death toll from small arms far exceeded the death toll from the use of other weapons systems,” Yuri Ambrazevich said.
The damage caused by the use of conventional weapons to infrastructure, cultural, educational, religious and medical facilities has long-term social and economic consequences, he noted.
The unchecked flooding by states of such weapons under the “noble pretext of ensuring security” breeds modern armed conflicts, fosters the destabilizing stockpiling of weapons and leads to the militarization of regions and the escalation of tensions,” the deputy minister said.
Moreover, excessive stockpiling of weapons significantly increases the risks of them flowing into illicit circulation. After all, most of the weapons end up on the black market, the Belarusian diplomat added.
The illicit flows of small arms and light weapons and other types of conventional weapons create fertile ground for the growth and strengthening of terrorist structures and transnational organized crime, Yuri Ambrazevich said.