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PS Omollo calls for collaborative efforts to tackle proliferation of small arms and light weapons

Interior Principal Secretary Raymond Omollo has underscored the need for collaborative efforts at both regional and international levels to combat the proliferation of small arms and light weapons.

Speaking during a regional preparatory meeting for the fourth Review Conference (REVCON4) on small arms and light weapons held in Nairobi on Tuesday, the PS reaffirmed Kenya’s commitment to implementing international instruments such as the United Nations Programme of Action (UNPoA) on Small Arms and Light Weapons.

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Omollo outlined Kenya’s efforts in strengthening national legal frameworks, enhancing border controls, and promoting regional cooperation in arms control.

“We have taken significant steps towards these goals, such as enhancing physical security and stockpile management of government stockpiles, capacity building of our law enforcement agencies on national and other international guidelines on small arms control, and investing in modern technologies and equipment to enhance our border surveillance capabilities,” said Omollo.

He emphasized the need for sustained political will and adequate resources to effectively implement measures against Small Arms and Light Weapons proliferation.

Omollo urged participating countries to reaffirm their commitment to relevant international instruments and prioritize the setting of national targets and implementing national action plans.

He further called upon regional bodies such as RECSA and SADC to set regional targets and develop roadmaps to reduce illegal possession, misuse, and trafficking of SALW and ammunition.

The conference which brought together 23 East and South African states was also attended by UN Under Secretary General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs Ms. Izumi Nakamitsu, and Ambassador Maritza Chan Valverde, the President Designate of the REVCON 4.

Chan said her role in the coming weeks and months will be to listen to States and try to forge a common way forward in tackling Small Arms and Light Weapons proliferation.

“I will also seek to engage a wide range of relevant stakeholders, not only from State governments, but also intergovernmental and regional organizations, industry and the private sector, and specialized civil society organizations who can contribute with their perspectives to our negotiations,” said Chan.

The regional preparatory precedes the fourth review conference scheduled to take place from 17th to 18th June, 2024 in New York as nations seek to implement the United Nations Program of Action and its International tracing Instrument (ITI).

Reporting by Sally Namuye.

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