United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs continues its support for weapons and ammunition destruction in Trinidad and Tobago

From 24 – 29 June 2012 the United Nations Office for Disarmament’s Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) assisted the Government of Trinidad and Tobago (GoTT) in the destruction of 1,131 surplus and obsolete small arms, including semi-automatic machine guns, pistols and revolvers. The weapons were destroyed at the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force (TTDF) Teteron Barracks using a combination of hydraulic shears and disc saws provided to the Government by UNLIREC. The destruction process included independent monitoring and verification undertaken by UNLIREC personnel.

A ceremonial destruction and closing ceremony took place on 29 June at the Teteron Barracks. During the ceremony, Chief of Defence Staff, Brigadier Kenrick Maharaj; Heads of Divisions; and members of the diplomatic community were addressed by Lt Col. Darnley Wyke of the TTDF; Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of National Security, Dr Wendy Quamina-Yorke; and UNLIREC Senior Programme Officer, Ms Juliet Solomon.

The destruction activities are made possible with the financial support of the US Department of State´s Office for Weapons Removal and Abatement. These activities form part of UNLIREC´s Caribbean Assistance Programme, launched in Kingston, Jamaica in April 2010, and carried out in eight Caribbean countries with the financial support of Canada and the USA. Since October 2011, UNLIREC has assisted the GoTT in the destruction of 2,286 surplus, obsolete and confiscated small arms, more than five tonnes of small arms ammunition and has provided equipment and training in order to guarantee permanent national capacity for weapons and ammunition destruction.

The Office for Disarmament Affairs’ Regional Disarmament Centres, which includes UNLIREC, serve over 135 countries worldwide and assists them in the implementation of arms control and disarmament programmes, such as the implementation of the 2001 UN Programme of Action on Small Arms.

The destruction of firearms and ammunition in cooperation with the GoTT is part of joint efforts to combat illicit trafficking in firearms, strengthen the capacity of the country’s security forces and reduce armed violence throughout the country.

For more information on UNLIREC visit [www.unlirec.org]. Please direct all questions or inquiries to: Ms Amanda Cowl, Political Affairs Officer [cowl@unlirec.org].

UNLIREC launches Central America Assistance Package on Small Arms and Light Weapons Control in El Salvador

On 16 July, the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs, through its Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC), launched its Central America Assistance Package in El Salvador undertaking three activities in San Salvador: Inter-Institutional Training Course on Combating the Illicit Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition and Explosives – IITC (17-26 July); Technical Seminar on Stockpile Management International Standards; and Legal Seminar on Small Arms and Light Weapons Control (20 July). This assistance package is funded by the government of Germany and Finland.

UNLIREC’s award-winning IITC course trained 63 security sector personnel from various law enforcement and judicial entities. Participants received focused training from international and regional experts on illicit SALW investigation and tracing techniques, technical aspects of SALW and ammunition identification, international and national legal frameworks, intelligence gathering and SALW and ammunition evidence management. Implementing partners addressed a series of cross–cutting issues related to the use of force, the impact of armed violence on youth and women, and child protection.

In parallel, UNLIREC trained 25 law enforcement personnel – responsible for managing firearms and ammunition depots and storage units – in stockpile management international standards, based on the UN International Ammunition Technical Guidelines (IATGs).

Additionally, UNLIREC presented a legal study on El Salvador’s firearms legislation providing a series of recommendations to strengthen legal control over firearms in the country in line with international and regional agreements. Legal experts from Guatemala and Nicaragua shared their national experiences with a view to providing different elements to enhance national firearms control in El Salvador.

UNLIREC’s assistance strengthens State capacities to implement relevant international and regional disarmament instruments, such as the United Nations Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (UN 2011 PoA).

For more information on UNLIREC visit [www.unlirec.org]. Please direct all questions or inquiries to: Ms. Amanda Cowl, Political Affairs Officer [cowl@unlirec.org].

UNLIREC provides legal firearms assistance to Venezuela

(Venezuela) – On 7 March, at the request of the Bolivian Republic of Venezuela, the Regional Centre emitted legal opinions on the State’s draft bill of law related to firearms. This legal assistance assessed the level of compatibility between the proposed bill and the obligations found under the various firearms-related international instruments, including the UN 2001 PoA, International Tracing Instrument, CIFTA Convention, and the UN Firearms Protocol. Moreover, the Centre provided a series of recommendations on how to make this draft legislation more consistent with global and regional legal instruments. By working hand-in-hand with States to revise national firearms legislation, UNLIREC is able to help them build more robust legal frameworks with a view to identifying and addressing legal gaps in legislation and thus avoiding impunity in cases related to illicit firearms trafficking.

This legal assistance to Venezuela complements the support provided to other States in the region, representing the fourth of its kind in the last 18 months.

United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs continues its support for weapons destruction in Trinidad and Tobago

On 26 April 2012 the United Nations Office for Disarmament’s Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) continued its assistance to the Government of Trinidad and Tobago in combatting illicit trafficking in firearms. In November 2011 UNLIREC assisted the Government in the destruction of 1,155 seized and surplus firearms and 5 tonnes of small arms ammunition.

On Thursday morning, 16,860 rounds of ammunition were destroyed at the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force Teteron Barracks using a Small Arms Ammunition Burning Tank (SAABT) designed and commissioned by UNLIREC and donated to the Trinidad and Tobago Government. Two law enforcement officials from the Trinidad and Tobago Police Force were trained in the operation of the SAABT, thus further enhancing indigenous capacity.

UNLIREC has also procured for the Government a set of Hydraulic Shears. Training for security sector personnel on use of the shears will take place on 18 May 2012 at which time a further 300-400 firearms will be destroyed. The destruction of firearms and ammunition in cooperation with the Government of Trinidad and Tobago is part of their joint efforts to combat the illicit trafficking in firearms, strengthen the capacity of the country’s security forces and reduce armed violence in Trinidad and Tobago

The destruction activities are made possible with the financial support of the US Department of State Office for Weapons Removal and Abatement. It is part of UNLIREC´s Caribbean Assistance Program, launched in Trinidad and Tobago in July 2010 and carried out in eight Caribbean countries with the financial support of Canada and the USA.

The Office for Disarmament Affairs’ Regional Disarmament Centres, which includes UNLIREC, serve over 135 countries worldwide and assists them in the implementation of arms control and disarmament programmes, such as the implementation of the 2001 UN Programme of Action on Small Arms.

United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs continues its support for weapons destruction in Trinidad and Tobago

From 24 – 29 June 2012 the United Nations Office for Disarmament’s Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) assisted the Government of Trinidad and Tobago (GoTT) in the destruction of 1,131 surplus and obsolete small arms, including semi-automatic machine guns, pistols and revolvers. The weapons were destroyed at the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force (TTDF) Teteron Barracks using a combination of hydraulic shears and disc saws provided to the Government by UNLIREC. The destruction process included independent monitoring and verification undertaken by UNLIREC personnel.

A ceremonial destruction and closing ceremony took place on 29 June at the Teteron Barracks. During the ceremony, Chief of Defence Staff, Brigadier Kenrick Maharaj; Heads of Divisions; and members of the diplomatic community were addressed by Lt Col. Darnley Wyke of the TTDF; Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of National Security, Dr Wendy Quamina-Yorke; and UNLIREC Senior Programme Officer, Ms Juliet Solomon.

The destruction activities are made possible with the financial support of the US Department of State´s Office for Weapons Removal and Abatement. These activities form part of UNLIREC´s Caribbean Assistance Programme, launched in Kingston, Jamaica in April 2010, and carried out in eight Caribbean countries with the financial support of Canada and the USA. Since October 2011, UNLIREC has assisted the GoTT in the destruction of 2,286 surplus, obsolete and confiscated small arms, more than five tonnes of small arms ammunition and has provided equipment and training in order to guarantee permanent national capacity for weapons and ammunition destruction.

The Office for Disarmament Affairs’ Regional Disarmament Centres, which includes UNLIREC, serve over 135 countries worldwide and assists them in the implementation of arms control and disarmament programmes, such as the implementation of the 2001 UN Programme of Action on Small Arms.

The destruction of firearms and ammunition in cooperation with the GoTT is part of joint efforts to combat illicit trafficking in firearms, strengthen the capacity of the country’s security forces and reduce armed violence throughout the country.

For more information on UNLIREC visit [www.unlirec.org]. Please direct all questions or inquiries to: Ms Amanda Cowl, Political Affairs Officer [cowl@unlirec.org].

La Oficina de Asuntos de Desarme de la ONU entrega cizallas hidraulicas a las Bahamas para la destrucción de armas de fuego

El Centro Regional de las Naciones Unidas para la Paz, el Desarme y el Desarrollo en América Latina y el Caribe (UNLIREC) de la Oficina de Asuntos de Desarme de las Naciones Unidas, con el apoyo financiero de la Oficina para la Eliminación y Reducción de Armas del Departamento de Estado de Estados Unidos, ha procurado y enviado al gobierno de las Bahamas un equipo de cizallas hidráulicas con el fin de asegurar que gobierno tiene una capacidad permanente de recursos humanos y técnicos para destruir las armas de fuego excedentes, decomisadas u obsoletas.

La entrega de estas cizallas forma parte del Paquete de Asistencia para la Destrucción de Armas de Fuego y Gerencia de Arsenales de UNLIREC que se orienta a la lucha contra el tráfico ilícito de armas al reducir el riesgo de robo, desvío de la posesión del gobierno de armas de fuego, municiones y explosivos excedentes, decomisados u obsoletos. De acuerdo al Paquete de Asistencia, UNLiREC ya ha realizado una evaluación nacional en línea base y ha proporcionado candados estándares internacionales para mejorar los niveles de almacenamiento y seguridad en los arsenales claves del gobierno.

La Fuerza Real de la Policía de las Bahamas recibió las cizallas para su instalación. El 14 de mayo de 2012, UNLIREC proporcionó capacitación de éstas a 16 oficiales de la Fuerza Real de la Policía, la Fuerza Real de Defensa, las Prisiones de Su Majestad, Aduanas e Inmigraciones de las Bahamas que resultó en la simbólica destrucción de 42 armas.

Adicionalmente, la asistencia por parte de UNLIREC al Gobierno de las Bahamas y a los demás países del caribe beneficiados, de acuerdo al Paquete de Asistencia para el periodo Junio 2012 – Mayo 2013, incluye entre otros:

Desarrollo de metodologías de verificación y seguimiento de armas independientes.
Establecimiento de métodos seguros y eficientes para la destrucción y disposición de armas de fuego, municiones y explosivos excedentes basados en estándares de la ONU.
Examinación legal de la legislación nacional y regulaciones en el Caribe para asegurar al Estado conforme a los instrumentos internacionales claves.