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UNODA Occasional Papers No. 33

United Nations Efforts to Reduce Military Expenditures - A Historical Overview

image of UNODA Occasional Papers No. 33

This publication provides a historic overview of the efforts within the United Nations to reduce military spending. It examines how the discussions on reducing military budgets have evolved in disarmament forums over the last decades. This includes early efforts to pursue the reduction of military spending throughout the Cold War period as a distinct objective of general and complete disarmament, the emergence of efforts related to promoting transparency on military matters, and the various workstreams carried out under the banner of the relationship between disarmament and development.

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Disarmament and the 2030 agenda for sustainable development

In September 2000, heads of United Nations Member States adopted the Millennium Declaration, which included sections on values and principles; peace, security and disarmament; development and poverty eradication; protecting our common environment; human rights, democracy and good governance; protecting the vulnerable; meeting the special needs of Africa; and strengthening the United Nations.1 The time-bound targets related to development and the eradication of extreme poverty became the eight Millennium Development Goals, with a target completion date of 2015.2 The fact that the framework of the Goals was limited to addressing only one aspect of the Millennium Declaration has been an object of criticism, not the least because it deprived the international community with an opportunity to address the interconnections between the issues.

English

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