09/05/2003
Press Release
DC/2865



UN ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON CENTRAL AFRICAN SECURITY TO HOLD SMALL ARMS SEMINAR,

19TH MINISTERIAL MEETING IN BRAZZAVILLE 12-17 MAY


NEW YORK, 9 May (Department for Disarmament Affairs) -- The United Nations Standing Advisory Committee on Security Questions in Central Africa will hold a seminar on the implementation of the Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects (UN PoA), from 12 to 14 May 2003 in Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo.


Participants at the seminar will include senior government officials and representatives of civil society from the Central African region, as well as representatives of donor countries, international non-governmental organizations and the United Nations system.


The central objective of the seminar is to develop a road map for the implementation of the UN PoA in the region over the next two years.  The road map will also constitute the contribution of the Central African region to the First Biennial Meeting of States on the Implementation of the UN PoA, to be held from

7 to 11 July 2003 at United Nations Headquarters in New York.


The Standing Advisory Committee consists of the 11 member States of the Economic Community of the Central African States (ECCAS), namely, Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Rwanda and Sao Tome and Principe, most of whom have been particularly affected by the proliferation of illicit small arms and light weapons.


Following the seminar, the Committee will hold its nineteenth ministerial meeting from 14 to 17 May 2003, also in Brazzaville.


At the ministerial meeting, the Committee will review:  (i) the current geopolitical and security situation in the Central African region, with particular emphasis on Angola, Burundi, the Central African Republic, Chad, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo; (ii) the implementation by member States of previous recommendations and decisions; (iii) the activities of the United Nations Subregional Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Central Africa; and (iv) the status of the Early-Warning Mechanism.  It will also look into ways and means of strengthening cooperation between the United Nations and ECCAS States. 


For more information, please contact:  Francesc Claret, Department for Disarmament Affairs, tel: 963-5170.


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