Conventional Ammunition Management Seminar ‘Developments in Conventional Ammunition Management: What is New in Policy and Practice?’ starts in RACVIAC

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The Conventional Ammunition Management Seminar ‘Developments in Conventional Ammunition Management: What is New in Policy and Practice?’ is being held on 28-30 November 2023 in RACVIAC.

Due to the significance of the topic, and following the needs of our Members, RACVIAC, in collaboration with the United Nations Office of Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) and the Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD)’s Ammunition Management Advisory Team (AMAT), has organized a regional workshop as a part of its PSSM seminar series.

As the inadequate management of Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) and Conventional Ammunition (CA) poses safety and security risks that can lead to unplanned explosions at ammunition sites and diversion to illicit markets, for the past 10 years RACVIAC has been promoting safe, secure and sustainable Physical Security and Stockpile Management (PSSM) of arms, ammunitions and explosives in the South East European region. The main purpose of these activities has been to build the capacity of technical personnel in safe and secure management of weapons and ammunition, developing and implementing operational procedures and exchanging ideas on potential improvements of through-life management of weapons and ammunition, as well as to promote international standards and guidelines.

The Workshop Opening remarks were delivered by Ambassador Constatin-Mihail Grigorie, RACVIAC Director and Nora Allgaier, Political Affairs Officer, Conventional Arms Branch, UNODA.

Ambassador Grigorie expressed his pleasure in seeing all of the participants in the joint activity: “I am truly happy to say that we have with us today the participants not only from our Members in South East Europe but also from Associate Members (Hungary) and from partner organizations (Defense Threat Reduction Agency, OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina).”

He, furthermore, expressed RACVIAC utmost gratitude to the Federal Republic of Germany and OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina for the vital financial and logistical support they have provided, enabling this Seminar to become a reality, and also to RACVIAC partners, UNODA and AMAT, for providing support during the preparatory phase and their readiness and expertise in compiling the Seminar Program.

“A big thank you goes also to our distinguished experts from different key international organizations like the Conflict Armament Research (CAR), United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR), ITF Enhancing Human Security, South Eastern and Eastern Europe Clearinghouse for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons (SEESAC), Small Arms Survey (SAS) and Mines Advisory Group (MAG) for accepting our invitation to support this Seminar and to share their valuable experience on the topic”, he continued.

Ambassador Constantin – Mihail Grigorie also explained how the main focus of PSSM activities in the last 10 years has evolved step by step from awareness raising through sharing of lessons learned and experiences gained, all the way to this particular activity, whose purpose is to present recent policy developments at the international level with the conclusion of the open-ended working group on conventional ammunition.

Ms Nora Allgaier, UNODA, started her Opening remarks by thanking RACVIAC for the fruitful collaboration and close partnership in organizing this regional seminar and she further thanked the Ammunition Management Team (AMAT) for their technical and substantive expert support in the design and delivery of the Seminar.

She also reflected on what to expect from the Seminar: “The next few days provide us with an important opportunity to jointly reflect and unpack the new Global Framework for Through-life Conventional Ammunition Management.”  

Before closing, she expressed UNODAs enthusiasm about having such a diverse and knowledgeable group of experts and practitioners from national authorities, UN entities and international, regional and non-governmental organizations participating in this seminar. “This is in line with the spirit of the Global Framework to promote a multi-stakeholder approach to conventional ammunition management”, she concluded.

This seminar brings together professionals and experts in the field of through-life management of conventional ammunition, including representatives of national militaries, relevant defence ministries and international and regional organizations. The Seminar will comprise presentations, group exercises and discussions.