The Obama administration has lined up more than 40 countries who have agreed to a joint declaration on the import and export of armed unmanned systems, in what the US State Department is billing as the first step toward creating global norms for the weapon systems.

The agreement will be formally announced Wednesday afternoon. Defense News first broke news of the agreement, then in draft form, in August.

In addition to the US, signatories include Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Montenegro, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Paraguay, the Philippines, Poland, Portugal, , Romania, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and Uruguay.

Titled “Joint Declaration for the Export and Subsequent Use of Armed or Strike-Enabled Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs),” the one-page statement lists five general principals, in line with those established last year by the US, for the import and export of armed drones.

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