On 18-20 October 2021, UNLIREC offered a virtual workshop on control measures to prevent the illicit trafficking in firearms and ammunition in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Panama. The workshop was attended by 48 Panamanian officers (10 women) from national institutions with responsibilities in implementing controls on international transfers of firearms and ammunition, including the National Customs Authority, the Institutional Directorate in Public Security Affairs, the Specialized Prosecutor Office against Organized Crime, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Public Security, the National Police Department, and the National Border Service.

The purpose of the workshop was to strengthen national capacities to prevent and combat illicit firearms and ammunition trafficking by sharing key implementing legal and practical control measures to be applied during international transfers of such goods.

During day 1 of the workshop, UNLIREC, the Central American Integration System (SICA), and a representative of the Police Department of Panama presented trends, modus operandi, routes, and challenges regarding illicit trafficking in firearms which are faced at the regional, sub-regional and Panamanian context.

Based on international instruments and technical guidelines, UNLIREC presented on day 2 the main aspects regarding national control systems and documentation for international transfers of firearms and ammunition, as well as legal and practical measures to prevent illicit brokering in such goods.

On day 3, the World Customs Organisation (WCO) delivered presentations and conducted practical exercises on the role of customs authorities in preventing illicit trafficking in firearms and ammunition.

The workshop contributed to bringing together national agencies involved in preventing illicit trafficking in firearms and ammunition and highlighted the importance of multi-sectoral coordination and cooperation among national agencies.

This virtual seminar was part of the “Combatting Illicit Firearms and Ammunition trafficking in Latin America and the Caribbean” project and it was possible thanks to the financial support of the Government of Germany.

For more information on UNLIREC, visit www.unlirec.org. Please direct all questions or inquiries to info@unlirec.org.