From 2-4 December 2019, the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America (UNLIREC), in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of El Salvador, conducted the Firearms and Ammunition Evidence Management Course (EMC) in the National Public Security Academy (ANSP, in Spanish) – at the headquarters in San Luis Talpa.

UNLIREC has designed this course with the general objective of strengthening the capacities of first responders, personnel from specialized areas, experts, justice operators, among others, to carry out an adequate processing of the crime scene and to guarantee an adequate evidence management for those crimes in which firearms and ammunition are present.

In this edition of the EMC, held for the first time in El Salvador, 25 officials from specialized areas of the National Civil Police, personnel from the National Public Security Academy, the Attorney General of the Republic and the Ministry of Defence were trained.

During this courses, participants received theoretical and practical training on the identification of firearms and ammunition, legal aspects related to the adversarial system of criminal justice, good practices for proper management of the crime scene and for the evidence processing and analysis, the chain-of-custody system, among other topics and specific guidance to strengthen the investigation and intelligence processes related to cases involving firearms and ammunition. In addition, the course included a series of practical exercises through which participants had the opportunity to apply the knowledge acquired during the course.

As a cross-cutting theme of the EMC, a series of technical elements were shared to incorporate the gender perspective in criminal investigation processes. Participants were urged to strengthen coordination and cooperation among all actors involved in the different stages of the judicial investigation in order to optimize their individual and collective efforts to cope with firearm related crimes with special attention to cases of violence against women.

This activity is part of the project “Building Momentum for the Regional implementation of A/RES/65/69 on Women, Disarmament, Non-Proliferation and Arms Control”, which is implemented thanks to the financial support of the Government of Canada.