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Small Arms Survey at BMS5

16 to 20 June 2014

The Fifth Biennial Meeting of States (BMS5) on the UN Programme of Action on small arms (PoA) is being held at UN Headquarters in New York from 16 to 20 June. This meeting brings together UN member states to take stock of the implementation of the PoA, assembling government delegations and representatives of civil society with an interest in small arms issues.

The Small Arms Survey will take this opportunity to present a range of relevant publications and resources at events held in parallel to the BMS5 meeting. (Most of these events are only accessible for delegates at the BMS5 meeting or others with security passes to enter the UN Headquarters.)

These include:

Small Arms Survey 2014: Women and Guns

The flagship publication this year considers the multiple roles of women in the context of armed violence, security, and the small arms agenda. The volume’s thematic section comprises one chapter on violence against women and girls—with a focus on post-conflict Liberia and Nepal—and another on the recent convergence of the small arms agenda with that of women, peace, and security. These chapters complement regular updates on the UN small arms process, reviews of transparency in reporting small arms transfers, examination of illicit transfers, and a number of country case studies. The Small Arms Survey 2014: Women and Guns will be launched at a BMS5 side event hosted by the Permanent Mission of Switzerland.

  • Launch: Monday, 16 June, at 1 pm, Conference Room C, UN HQ (Briefing for UN accredited media at 11 am at the same venue)

Implementation of the Programme of Action on Small Arms

Small Arms Survey research and analysis on control measures for small arms and light weapons inform policy-making at national, regional, and international levels. A number of publications and resources have been prepared or updated to provide input for the BMS5. These will be presented at a side event hosted by the Permanent Mission of Australia. Publications and resources include  A Diplomat’s Guide to the UN Small Arms Process: 2014 Update and Regional Organizations and the UN PoA (with online resources and French translations); as well as several Research Notes and Issue Briefs on related topics.

Unplanned explosions at munitions sites

Unplanned explosions at munitions sites (UEMS) are a global problem. A single UEMS incident often results in dozens of casualties and millions of dollars in damages to nearby buildings, infrastructure, and homes. Recent research reveals that these incidents are quite common. The Small Arms Survey has produced a historical overview of every known UEMS event dating back to 1979. A new Handbook—Unplanned Explosions at Munitions Sites (UEMS): Excess Stockpiles as Liabilities rather than Assets—being launched at BMS5,  explains the scale and scope of the challenge and offers detailed profiles of  actors undertaking UEMS-related activities. This resource provides advice to states with advice on managing their stockpiles effectively and generating better data on these events. It is complemented by a series of Research Notes on the topic, and an online database providing updated information on UEMS events.

Small arms and light weapons trafficking in North Africa

A side event hosted by the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of the Netherlands will discuss the increasing availability and circulation of small arms and light weapons and its effect on the continuing instability in North Africa. Based on extensive field research by the Small Arms Survey and its partners within the framework of the Security Assessment in North Africa, the panel will provide the latest insights on small arms trafficking dynamics in the south of Libya, as well as the current situation at Libya’s southern and western borders.

  • Wed 18 June, 1 pm, Conference Room 3, UN HQ
  • More information on the Security Assessment in North Africa project:

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