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Weapons and ammunition identification


The proliferation and use of small arms and light weapons play an important role in numerous issues of global concern, such as armed conflict, crime, governance, and development. Knowledge of these weapons is key to understanding and reporting on these and other critical issues.

The Small Arms Survey recently conducted the third and fourth in a series of workshops for journalists, aimed at expanding and improving reporting on weapons and ammunition. The two workshops, held in early December 2016 in Tunis in cooperation with the Center for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces - Geneva (DCAF) and its Trust Fund for North Africa, provided an overview of the contemporary landscape of weapons proliferation and control, including how weapons make their way from legitimate users to non-state armed groups and criminal organizations. Participants working in North Africa and beyond were also taught how to record and identify weapons and ammunition encountered in the field with a particular focus on tracking the sources of weapons and understanding the strategic and diplomatic implications of their proliferation.

By encouraging closer collaboration between journalists, researchers, and other specialists, the Survey aims to contribute to a better understanding of the dynamics of weapons and confli

The Small Arms Survey has developed several tools and publications to assist with weapons identification.





  • Ammunition Tracing Kit: designed to enable rapid, reliable, and responsible reporting of small-calibre ammunition in a variety of circumstances.



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