On 30 September 2019, the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) held a Seminar on “Arms and Ammunition Import Control of Private Security Companies and Armouries” in Santo Domingo. This Seminar follows the assistance that UNLIREC provides to the Dominican Republic in strengthening its effective and transparent management of small arms and ammunition in the private security sector.

In conjunction with the Superintendence of Surveillance and Private Security (SVSP), this Seminar was organised to share useful technical elements when analysing and authorising the import of arms and ammunition. It was particularly aimed at national institutions, such as private security companies and armouries. The seminar hosted representatives of SVSP, Customs, Ministry of Interior, the Police force, and specialised agencies of the Ministry of Defense.

Throughout the Seminar, participants discussed some of the main legal provisions and obligations contained in international instruments on arms and ammunition transfers control, with special emphasis on those contained in the Arms Trade Treaty.

The Seminar included practical simulation exercises  in which participants were encouraged to apply UNLIREC´s risk assessment methodology of imports. This training also allowed for participants to identify future challenges, as well as to strengthen cooperation and coordination among national institutions with responsibilities in arms transfers control, regulation of private security companies and civilian arms control.

In addition to this Seminar, UNLIREC made a series of voluntary visits to some private security companies to assess their management of arms and ammunition, in accordance with international standards.

The implementation of this type of assistance is possible thanks to the financial support of the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany.