Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs Jonas Gahr Støre commented, “According to UNDP, armed violence claims the lives of 2000 people every day, most of whom are civilians. This is a significant humanitarian challenge for the international community, and it is an obstacle to peaceful development in very many countries.
“The Oslo Commitments we have agreed on here in Geneva today show that the UN and the international community take this problem seriously and that targeted efforts to address armed violence are beginning to bear fruit. This is an important stepping stone, and in partnership with the UN, civil society and other countries, we will continue to work towards achieving the UN Millennium Development Goals.
“We note that humanitarian disarmament is receiving increasing international attention and support. For example, there are positive signals from the US, where 68 senators have requested that the US joins the Mine Ban Convention.
Under the Oslo Commitments, countries undertake to implement a number of concrete measures. Systematic monitoring and measurement of armed violence, integration of efforts to combat armed violence into development plans at all levels of government and recognition of victims’ rights are key elements.
Norway and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) co-hosted today’s conference in Geneva.
The opening statement by Minister of Foreign Affairs Jonas Gahr Støre can be found here.
For more information on the Oslo Conference on Armed Violence, click here.