Legal clinic of the Master of Laws (University of Antwerp) and International Peace Information Service Antwerp

Students of the legal clinic organised by the law and development group, Antwerp will be publishing a series of working papers.

These working papers are a result of research initiated as part of the Legal Clinic of the Master of Laws (University of Antwerp) for the International Peace Information Service Antwerp. The project focused on prohibitions to arms transfers based on Article 6(2) of the Arms Trade Treaty. Article 6(2) prohibits any transfers that would violate a State’s relevant international obligations under international agreements to which it is a party. However, which legal instruments or norms can be considered relevant for the purpose of this provision remains unclear. The research therefore sought to clarify which international obligations fall under Article 6(2). 

This first paper interprets Article 6(2) to determine whether human rights obligations are to be considered relevant for the purpose of Article 6(2). Moreover, it seeks to answer the question of whether arms transfers can violate human rights law in international agreements, leading to a prohibition to transfer under Article 6(2).

The second policy paper poses similar research questions with regard to the relevant obligations in the Charter of the United Nations.

No 1: Arms transfer prohibitions due to human rights violations abroad: Is there a place for human rights law in Article 6(2) of the Arms Trade Treaty?