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UNITED NATIONS REGIONAL CENTRE FOR PEACE AND DISARMAMENT IN AFRICA TO SUPPORT MALI WORKSHOP ON SMALL ARMS, LIGHT WEAPONS, 12-14 FEBRUARY

By UNITED NATIONS
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NEW YORK, February 11, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Mali's National Commission for the Fight against the Proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons and the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Africa (UNREC) are jointly organizing a workshop in Bamako, from 12 to 14 February, for the validation of the 2014-2018 National Action Plan to combat the proliferation and illicit trafficking of small arms and light weapons.

Funded by Germany since December 2013, UNREC supports the National Commission's development of Mali's National Action Plan, which will guide the country's small arms control activities for the period 2014-2018.

The project includes the following activities: visits to different regions of Mali to consult local stakeholders on the content of the National Action Plan; ensuring that the Plan meets international arms control standards and abides by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Convention on Small Arms and Light Weapons; a workshop to validate the 2014-2018 National Action Plan with the participation of all stakeholders involved in the fight against the proliferation of and illicit trafficking in small arms and light weapons; and the delivery of information technology equipment, as well as a vehicle to support the proper functioning of the National Commission on Small Arms in Bamako and other regions of Mali.

Last 25 April, the Security Council approved resolution 2100 (2013), establishing the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), subsequently deployed on 1 July that year. Paragraph 28 of the resolution calls for the Malian authorities, with the assistance of MINUSMA and international partners, to address the proliferation of and illicit trafficking in small arms and light weapons, in accordance with the ECOWAS Convention and the United Nations Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects.

Given the current security situation in Mali and the risks relating to the uncontrolled spread of small arms and light weapons, there is a need to implement all actions and steps to help prevent conflict and consolidate the achievements made in terms of peace and security. In that context, UNREC supports Mali's National Commission on Small Arms.