Inter-Region Coop. Key to Curb illicit Arms Trafficking: Govt

ADDIS ABEBA – Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has called on regional leaders to enhance their cooperation to stop illegal arms trafficking in the country.

Abiy said this during his meeting with chief state administrators on ways to fight against illicit trafficking in firearms on Wednesday.

Federal police forces and intelligence service report that they have intercepted illegal arms trafficking regularly.

With the support of the revised gun control law ratified in January, the federal government is now looking for a collaborative approach to curb gun ownership after the adverse effect of regional ethnic violence blamed on the proliferation of small arms in private hands.

“We discussed with regional leaders on enhanced coordination & inter-region cooperation to stop illegal arms trafficking and circulation within the country,” Abiy said today.

He said the coordination is needed both to effectively track the inflow from each source of illegal arms and to undertake operations to control illegal arms dealers.

Reports say the spread of small arms has been partly blamed for hundreds of killings in various conflicts over the past two years that have displaced many.

Without a valid license, the revised Gun Control law, prohibits the import, export, possess, put, store, use, exhibit, broker, sale, buy, transfer, transport, manufacture, train, repair and dispose of firearms.