From 3 to 19 August 2022, the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) delivered its Interdicting Small Arms, Ammunition, Parts and Components (ISAAPC) course in Jamaica for the first time. Twenty-seven (27) officials, including fourteen (14) women, from the Jamaica Constabulary Force, Jamaica Customs Agency and Port Security actively participated in the hybrid course.

Participants were trained on the fundamental aspects of X-ray technology as well as the technical specifications of small arms, their parts and components, ammunition, explosives, and less lethal weapons. Students benefited from virtual theoretical sessions and in-person practical presentations and exercises on the identification of firearms, their parts and components and ammunition. The course also included an interactive session on concealment methods being employed by traffickers in the region. Throughout the course, participants also trained on an X-ray simulation programme developed by the Centre for Adaptive Security Research and Applications (CASRA), to enhance and develop their capacities to detect illicit trafficking through X-ray scanners.

The ISAAPC course forms part of the technical assistance provided by UNLIREC under the Saving Lives Entity (SALIENT) Fund project which aims to reduce violence and the proliferation of illicit firearms in Jamaica. The course aims to strengthen the capacities of States to combat and prevent the illicit trafficking of small arms, ammunition and explosives that is carried out through postal shipments, packages, parcels and luggage at entry, exit, and transit points in the country.

This specialized course, developed in line with the 2001 UN Programme of Action on Small Arms, the Arms Trade Treaty and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, in particular target 16.4, contributes towards regional efforts to prevent illicit trafficking of firearms and ammunition, thereby reducing firearms-related crimes and armed violence in the Caribbean. This course also contributes to the implementation of Goal 2 of the Caribbean Firearms Roadmap, entitled ‘Reduce the illicit flow of firearms and ammunition into, within and beyond the region’.