Regulating Weapons Deals

The case for European controls on arms brokers

Published: 3 March 2003

In one area, there is too little regulation in the European Union. The EU regulates everything from beaches to bananas, but not arms brokers. This is despite the fact that Europe is home to many of the world’s arms brokers responsible for arranging deliveries of weapons into countries in conflict and or into the hands of those who commit grave human rights abuses. European controls must keep up with the international nature of the arms business. The EU should agree a joint action obliging all countries to register arms brokers and put their activities under a licensing regime in order to curb this deadly trade.