Chairman of LiNCSA, Mr. James M. Fromayan
Small Arms Body Presents Report To VP Boakai
MONROVIA, July 18 (LINA) -The Liberia National Commission on Small Arms (LiNCSA) has presented its Assessment of Liberia’s Compliance with the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) to the Vice President, Dr. Joseph Nyumah Boakai.
According to a Foreign Ministry release, the presentation was made to VP Boakai at a ceremony held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at the weekend.
Before making the presentation to Vice President Boakai, the Chairman of LiNCSA, Mr. James M. Fromayan, said Liberia has a keener understanding than most about the need for effective control of conventional arms, their ownership, use, and transfer across borders.
“Our own terrible war was made much worse by the ready supply and movement of weapons within Liberia and from other countries to anyone
who wanted them,” Fromayan added.
He stated that for this reason, he and others at the Commission worked closely with partners, including the ECOWAS Convention on Small Arms and Light Weapons and with the National Legislature, which has now passed into the law the Firearms and Ammunition Control Act.
Fromayan said Liberia being a member of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) has to do all to be fully compliant with that instrument, which it signed in June 2013 and ratified in November 2014.
“The ATT is the first legally-binding global instrument to regulate, not ban, the international transfer of conventional arms. By conventional arms, I am not talking only of small arms, but all conventional arms, up to battleships, fighter aircrafts and tanks,” he said.
Fromayan added: “Fundamentally, the ATT requires every cross-border arms sale to be explicitly authorized by the government, on the basis of agreed rules for when it is and when it is not, ok to transfer.”
He indicated that under the Treaty it is not okay to transfer arms where they would be used for genocide and human rights abuse but only places where they would be legitimately used for defense purposes.
Providing an answer to those who may be wondering why the country should be bothered with the ATT since it is now peaceful, Mr. Fromayan stressed that “only a quick glance at the news each day will tell you an out-of-control arms trade continues to wreak havoc around the globe.
“By its very nature, this is truly a global problems, and Liberia needs to play its part to face it,” he pointed out.
The Chairman of LiNCSA said the need for the country to fully implement the Treaty is more urgent with the drawdown of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) and the transfer of responsibility for security back to the Liberian government.