UNLIREC and Government of El Salvador complete final phase of small arms control assistance aimed at private security companies operating in El Salvador

The United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (UNLIREC) and the Government of El Salvador carried out several activities in April, aimed at concluding the first phase of the project, entitled:Strengthening Oversight and Building Capacities for Small Arms Control and Nonproliferation in the Private Security Sector, which they have been implementing in the country since July 2015.

During the month of April 2016, the secondary marking of small arms belonging to private security companies that participate in the project continued. Since 2013, the government of El Salvador has a regulation on secondary marking – – taking place after the initial marking phase, which occurs at the time of manufacture– – in line with international agreements on combating the illicit trafficking of small arms signed by the government. The secondary marking helps to track firearms until they reach their final legal user and improve the weapons inventory management of the companies. During the first phase of the project, UNLIREC has facilitated the marking of more than 500 firearms belonging to thirteen security companies.

Furthermore, UNLIREC and the government of El Salvador carried out an event that recounted the results obtained during the first phase of the project. Among the results the training on firearms and ammunition warehouses management of more than 20 private security companies, and the technical advice on stockpile management and physical security measures of five companies stand out. All of these activities are in line with the UN International Small Arms Control Standards (ISACS) and the International Ammunition Technical Guidelines (IATG).

During this event, UNLIREC distributed material for the weapons rooms of all private security companies involved in the project. UNLIREC donated devices commonly known as bullet-traps, which consist of metallic cylinders where individuals receiving or handing over weapons can ensure that the firearms has been made safe by placing it inside the bullet trap which absorbs and contains an errant round of ammunition. . In addition, the companies received warning stickers of dangerous materials according to the UN Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods (UN Orange Book). These stickers must be placed in the vicinity where ammunition is stored.

This project, which provides technical assistance to both the national authorities in charge of regulating the private security sector nationwide, and the companies that provide security services, is implemented in collaboration with the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) with the financial support of the Federal Republic of Germany. The project`s main goal is to promote small arms and ammunition control standards, good practices and initiatives of global recognition, and good governance in the private security sector.

Through this assistance package, UNLIREC supports Latin American and Caribbean States strengthen public security and the implementation of the UN Programme of Action on the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All its Aspects (UN 2001 PoA).

For more information on UNLIREC visit (www.unlirec.org). Please direct all questions or inquiries to Amanda Cowl, Political Affairs Officer (cowl@unlirec.org).

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