On 26 March, the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC), in collaboration with the Costa Rican Ministry of Public Security, conducted the Seminar on the Control of Firearm and Ammunition Imports Control in San José, with particular focus on private security companies and trading houses as end-users. In addition to members of civil society, the Seminar boasted the participation of authorities and representatives from the Office for Private Security Services, the General Directorate of Armament, the General Directorate of Customs, the Judicial Investigation Department, the Intelligence and National Security Department, the Department of Arms and Explosives Control, the Fiscal Control Police and officials from the Special Intervention Unit as entities responsible for the authorization and control of arms transfers and the regulation of private security services.
During the day, stakeholders shared the main findings on the private security and firearms situation in Latin America and the Caribbean. Legal provisions and obligations concerning the control of arms and ammunition transfers included in international instruments were addressed, placing special emphasis on those outlined in the Arms Trade Treaty. For their part, authorities from the Ministry of Public Security and the General Directorate of Customs shared the progress being made in the national system of arms imports in Costa Rica.
The activity ended with two practical simulation exercises. Participants were given the opportunity to apply the import evaluation methodology created by UNLIREC on the basis of criteria and elements outlined in international instruments. The seminar placed particular emphasis on transfers intended for private security and arms trading companies.
The workshop allowed stakeholders to visualize future challenges and promote cooperation and coordination among the national entities responsible for controlling transfers and civilian-held firearms as well as regulating private security services.
Since 2015 the United Nations Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) has been implementing assistance projects in Costa Rica on small arms and ammunition control in the private security sector.
The implementation of this Project is made possible thanks to financial support from the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.
In recent decades, with its nuances and variations, in Latin America and the Caribbean exponential growth has been recorded in private security services and in parallel, a greater legal demand for firearms to fuel the functioning and operations of these companies. This situation has presented a number of challenges for the States as well as the sector. The latter has become a potential target for criminal networks which seek to arm themselves. Lax legal frameworks, poor weapons management and the lack of training for personnel have been documented as factors which lead to a series of risks including losses, robberies and theft of arms and ammunition which represent a potential source of deviation to illegality.
In this context, at the request of the Dominican Republic, the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC), carried out on 13 March 2019 in Santo Domingo, the official launch of the technical assistance packet for strengthening national capacities for the effective and transparent management of small arms and ammunition in the private sector.
The aforementioned launch was carried out within the context of an executive seminar on good practices and international standards in the private security sector, which boasted the participation of representatives from the Ministry of Defence, the Superintendence of Surveillance and Private Security, the Public Ministry and other institutions, as well as representatives and managers from different private security companies and associations in the sector.
In this Seminar, the main initiatives and international standards available and applicable to private security as well as arms and ammunition control in the sector were presented, in order to start an open dialogue with the authorities, security companies and representatives in the sector on the opportunities for developing mechanisms for good governance.
As part of the first set of activities in this assistance packet, a technical workshop on international standards and good practices for stockpile management was also carried out on 14 and 15 March in Santo Domingo. In this Workshop, which was directed at supervisory personnel from the regulatory entity and personnel from private security companies, around 40 persons were trained. They received training in standards and procedures for strengthening physical security and stockpile procedures in order to mitigate and reduce the risks of illegal deviation.
The implementation of this assistance is made possible thanks to the financial support of the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.
From 27-28 November, UNLIREC carried out the third in a series of technical workshops on international stockpile management standards in Jamaica in order to strengthen the capacity of Private Security Company operational personnel and employees of other agencies responsible for firearms and ammunition stockpile management.
The mission forms part of UNLIREC´s German-funded Project to prevent and combat illicit arms and ammunition trafficking in Latin America and the Caribbean. This project, among other goals, aims at strengthening the oversight and build capacities for small arms control and non-proliferation in the private security sector in the region.
23 officials were trained on stockpile management and physical security measures for weapons and ammunition storage facilities in order to reduce diversion risks. Workshop content was based on the Modular Small Arms Control Implementation Compendium (MOSAIC) and the International Ammunition Technical Guidelines (IATGs). Participants included certified instructors from the Firearm Licensing Authority, Private Security Companies, Dealers and Shooting Range Operators.
On 29 November, UNLIREC also carried out an assessment of the weapon and ammunition storage practices and physical security measures of the Jamaica Rifle Association (JRA) in order to provide technical recommendations to avert possible risks of diversion.
UNLIREC, as the regional organ of the UN Office for Disarmament, seeks to advance the cause of practical disarmament in Latin America and the Caribbean as part of its commitment to support Member States in their implementation of international disarmament and non-proliferation instruments, in particular, the 2001 UN Programme of Action on Small Arms.
The United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) is moving forward in Mexico with the implementation of activities under its project entitled Oversight and Building Capacities for Small Arms Control and Non-proliferation in the Private Security Sector.
From 21-25 May 2018, UNLIREC carried out a series of activities to promote good governance in the private security sector. Federal and state authorities, as well as private security entrepreneurs, attended this Executive Seminar, which addressed good practices, international standards and norms that strengthen arms control and contribute, not only to better regulate the private security sector, but also to its professionalization.
With a view to educating the technical staff of private security companies, as well as private security regulators at the state level, UNLIREC hosted a two-day technical workshop for employees responsible for the oversight and stockpile management. More than 50 officials were trained on how to incorporate physical security procedures at weapons and ammunition stockpiles in order to mitigate the risk of arms diversion towards the illicit market. The content of the workshop is based on the International Small Arms Control Standards (ISACS) and the International Ammunition Technical Guidelines (IATGs).
Finally, UNLIREC, along with the Mexican authorities, held a round-table discussion on non-lethal weapons as a means of facilitating a forum for government authorities to discuss their use by private security companies, as well as the respective oversight and regulatory regimes, while also considering norms and legal and technical issues.
The assistance provided is made possible through the financial support of the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany. By providing assistance to Latin American and Caribbean States, UNLIREC contributes to the enhancement of public security and the implementation of the UN Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (UN 2001 PoA).
For more information on UNLIREC, please visit (www.unlirec.org) or contact Ms. Amanda Cowl, Political Affairs Officer (email@example.com)
The United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) is moving forward with the implementation of the arms control project aimed at the private security sector in Jamaica. This project was officially launched in November 2017 with the financial support of the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.
On May 15-16, 2018, at the request of the Government of Jamaica, UNLIREC held a technical workshop on international stockpile management standards. The main objective was to educate the operating staff of private security companies across the country and the initiative was, therefore, aimed at employees responsible for stockpile management. In order to mitigate the risk of arms diversion, training was centred on physical security measures for the weapons storage facilities of security companies. The workshop was attended by 13 companies and was based on the International Small Arms Control Standards (ISACS) and the International Ammunition Technical Guidelines (IATGs).
By providing assistance to Latin American and Caribbean States, UNLIREC contributes to the enhancement of public security and the implementation of the UN Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (UN 2001 PoA).
For more information on UNLIREC, please visit (www.unlirec.org) or contact Ms. Amanda Cowl, Political Affairs Officer (firstname.lastname@example.org).