“ILLEGAL TRAFFICKING OF SMALL ARMS: PERCEPTION OF SECURITY AND RADICALIZATION” - STUDY
“Illegal trafficking of small arms: perception of security and radicalization in Ukraine” - the results of such a study were presented in the Ministry by senior researchers of Small Arms Survey, a platform designed to bring together stakeholders to reduce or prevent illegal arms trafficking in the world.
The beginning of armed aggression in the East of Ukraine in 2014 had a profound impact on the illegal proliferation and use of small arms and light weapons in Ukraine. Concerns about the harmful impact of illegal arms trafficking on the peacebuilding in Ukraine and the security of its citizens have increased the radicalization of some elements of society, both groups and individuals.
“Recognizing the potential threats of the proliferation of illegal weapons in Ukraine, we supported such a study at the request of the Ministry for Temporarily Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons of Ukraine, which has effectively collaborated with the Small Arms Survey to conduct a preliminary assessment of the illegal acquisition and use of weapons, as well as strategies to reduce the illegal trade of weapons and armed violence,” said Swiss Ambassador to Ukraine H.E. Claude Wild.
The researchers had an aim to identify tendencies in the perception of violence related to small arms and light weapons and its perpetrators; to improve understanding of types of illegal weapons in Ukraine, sources, methods and routes of smuggling; to assess the Ukrainian legislative framework; to propose options for policy development and improvement of legislation, rules and practices to prevent the illegal proliferation and use of arms and ammunition.
Oleksandr Levchenko, Ambassador of Ukraine to Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina (2010-2017), Advisor to the Minister for Veterans Affairs, Temporarily Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons of Ukraine, noted that the proliferation of illegal weapons is a well-known problem in all countries where armed conflict has taken place.
“The Ministry is studying the experience of other countries where the armed conflict has taken place or is still taking place, and understands the problems Ukraine may face, as well as challenges that may arise even in peacetime after the war,” said Oleksandr Levchenko.
In accordance with the provisions of its activities, the Ministry takes measures to address the problems associated with the conflict and vulnerable territories, as well as has priority activities to strengthen the stability of the Ukrainian state and society. Such activities include coordination efforts on monitoring, data analysis, implementation of preventive measures to resolve conflicts in communities, including strengthening a sense of security and trust in government agencies - not only in the East, but also throughout Ukraine.