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The Boston Globe

World

In landmark vote, UN forges first global arms treaty

North Korea, Iran, and Syria oppose new restrictions

UNITED NATIONS — The UN General Assembly voted overwhelmingly Tuesday to create the first international treaty regulating the global arms trade, a landmark decision that imposes new constraints on the sale of conventional arms to governments and armed groups that commit war crimes, genocide, and other mass atrocities.

The UN vote was hailed by arms-control advocates and scores of governments, including the United States, as a major step in the global effort to enforce basic controls on the $70 billion international arms trade. But it was denounced by Iran, North Korea, and Syria for imposing restrictions that prevent smaller states from buying and selling weapons to ensure their self-defense.

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