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April 2, 2013

United Nations passes world's first #ArmsTreaty

Activists point to fierce social media campaign in success of historic treaty.
Delegates to the United Nations General Assembly April 2, 2013 after the passage of the first UN treaty regulating the international arms trade. AFP PHOTO / TIMOTHY A. CLARY

Arms control activists celebrated a long-awaited victory Tuesday after the United Nations adopted the first-ever global arms trade treaty. An overwhelming 154 nations voted in favour, with three against and 23 abstaining.

The treaty is the culmination of negotiations that have lasted over a decade, most recently breaking down last year.

Supporters tracked the vote online, tweeting live updates as they tallied member states' votes. The UN joined the fray to announce the passage of the treaty: