Deputy Defense Minister St. Jerome Larbelee has said that a recent four-day Arms Marking Training is the “start of showing more accountability of arms as research has shown that illegal arms have found their way through to Liberia.”
Representing the Liberian Government at the close of the training held at UNMIL Starbase in Monrovia, he indicated that due to no accountability for arms, the importance of the training cannot be over emphasized.
According to an EU release issued Tuesday, Larbelee added that this positive step forward has been taken and together everyone can build on this momentum.
The training was conducted for Liberian Security Agencies, including the Ministry of Defense, Liberia National Police, Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization, National Security Agency and the Executive Protection Services.
The training was under the guidance of Liberia National Commission on Small Arms (LINCSA) in collaboration with UNMIL, United Regional Center for Peace and Disarmament in Africa (UNREC) and the Ghana National Commission on Small Arms.
It was intended to ensure that all state-owned firearms in Liberia are to now be distinctly marked, in compliance with the ECOWAS Convention on Small Arms and the United Nations Program of Action.
The EU was greatly acknowledged for their funding, which has enabled two arms marking machines to be purchased, the first of their kind in Liberia.
European Union Ambassador, Mrs. Tiina Intelmann, in remarks stated that the international community, including the EU, UN and ECOWAS, supports LiNCSA and hopes that the people trained through this new initiative will help Liberia to flourish.
She said: “This country is in your hands and it is now down to you to train others and continue with your hard work and I wish you every success in this venture