LNP, Small Arms Commission Sign MOU

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The Liberia National Police and the Liberia National Commission on Small Arms have signed a memorandum of understanding that will introduce control on the proliferation of small arms in the country.

A police statement said the two institutions over the weekend signed the MOU which also considered the marking of small arms to include hunting rifles.

The MOU among other things, is intended by the Liberia National Commission on Small Arms to effectively supervise and coordinate mechanisms to control the possession of small arms and light weapons in support of a national standard for arms registry.

It also seeks to provide technical guidelines to the Liberia National Police in carrying out its responsibilities to ensure proper marking of fire arms, reflecting national standards consistent with ECOWAS classification system, including serial numbers and other important marks.

Under the memorandum, the Liberia National Police will ensure that all small arms and light weapons under its jurisdiction or control are marked and registered consistent with approved standard operating procedures and the provisions of the ECOWAS Convention on Small Arms and Light Weapons.

The police is also required to mark its firearms using uniform, national marking formats established by the Liberia National Commission on Small Arms, consistent with ECOWAS Convention on Small Arms and Light Weapons, and properly manage and secure the arms marking equipment provided while in its possession.

The Liberia National Commission on Small Arms is expected to provide the LNP arms marking equipment for a specified period and return under completion of the arms marking exercise with the exception of the desk top computers among others, as required under the MOU.

Speaking at the signing ceremony the Chairman of LINCSA, James Flomoyan, said the signing of the MOU was a significant milestone in the control of small arms, which becomes dangerous when in the wrong hands.

The LINCSA boss said Liberia is now on par with other countries within the sub-region on the control of small arms, which has played a major role in regional armed conflicts.

Signing on behalf of the Liberia National Police, Director C. Clarence Massaquoi said the MOU was a step forward in the control of small arms, which was becoming widespread in the commission of crimes throughout the region.

Director Massaquoi said the marking and control mechanism as laid out in the MOU will further stop the proliferation of small arms in the region, including Liberia. He pledged the full commitment of the police in upholding the MOU, stressing that it will help to contain conflict within the ECOWAS region.

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