On 6 and 7 September 2017, the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Africa (UNREC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) organized a sub-regional conference to assist countries of the Sahel region in developing a plan of action to prevent, combat and eradicate the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons. The conference was held in Abuja, Nigeria, with the participation of over thirty representatives from National Commissions, national experts, and civil society organizations from nine countries: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria and Senegal.
Throughout the conference, governmental experts reviewed the results of national surveys previously undertaken under this UNREC-UNDP joint project entitled Assessment survey on small arms in the Sahel Region and Neighbouring Countries, and developed a strategy and recommendations to implement a regional action plan on small arms and light weapons. The drafting of a regional action plan will help address the regulatory, institutional and infrastructural challenges identified in the survey.
This conference, within the UNREC-UNDP joint project is also the last project output implemented in these nine Sahel countries and financed by the Government of Japan.