Author: Peter Danssaert

IPIS Briefing March 2021 – Africa: armed violence and the illicit arms trade

April 2, 2021

The IPIS briefing offers a selection of articles, news and updates on natural resources, armed conflict, Business & Human Rights and arms trade.  Every month, an editorial and related publications shed a light on a specific topic in IPIS’ areas of research. In focus: Africa – armed violence and the illicit arms trade In the news: Guards at Petra Diamonds’ Tanzanian Mine deliberately modified a


Arms Trade Bulletin January – February 2021

February 26, 2021

AFRICA AND THE REGULATION OF TRANSNATIONAL ARMS BROKERING African countries face an ongoing threat from the consequences of unregulated arms brokering but this cannot be solved by remedial action in Africa alone. Cases show that criminal justice and United Nations Security Council responses to mass atrocities and other serious violations of international law can sometimes ensure accountability and


Arms Trade Bulletin November – December 2020

January 15, 2021

ETHIOPIA’S MILITARY OFFENSIVE IN TIGRAY ACCOMPANIED BY ATROCITIES AND INTERNAL REPRESSION: ETHIOPIAN GOVERNMENT REJECTS INTERNATIONAL CRITICISM On 4 November 2020 the Ethiopian National Defence Force (ENDF) launched a military offensive against the Tigray regional government. Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed dubbed it a “law enforcement operation” reportedly “to restore the rule of law and the


Arms Trade Bulletin August 2020

Arms Trade Bulletin July – August 2020

September 11, 2020

Pompeo covers up US failure to address Yemen civilian casualties from US munitions exports On the 11th August 2020 the Department of State Office of Inspector General (OIG) released its report on the investigation into Secretary Pompeo’s May 24, 2019 emergency determination made under the Arms Export Control Act for the sale or transfer of over $8.1 billion in defence articles and services to the


March April Bulletin

Arms Trade Bulletin March – April 2020

May 14, 2020

UNITED STATES SANCTIONS ENFORCEMENT POLICY On 9th March 2020 the Deputy Assistant Secretary (DAS) of State for Counter Threat Finance and Sanctions presented the United States Government’s sanctions policy and future sanctions enforcement posture at an event organised by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. The measures will impact the global maritime industry. (1) “The message from these ac


Arms Trade Bulletin January – February 2020

March 6, 2020

THE LIBYAN CONUNDRUM Since ousting Gaddafi in 2011 Libya has succumbed into chaos. The country is since 2014/15 split into two factions: the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA), which enjoys UN recognition, and the Tobruk-based Libyan House of Representatives. Despite a UN arms embargo both sides receive material support from various countries. The Libyan House of Representatives is


Africa and the grey market

Africa and the ‘grey market’

February 8, 2020

Arms brokering or inter-mediation is a commercial activity within the international arms trade that is difficult to regulate. Arms brokers often operate transnationally, so often escaping or avoiding national trade controls in their home countries and the countries where transactions have taken place. Their transnational operations also create “grey” markets, which sometimes fuel illicit markets.


Arms Trade Bulletin November – December 2019

January 17, 2020

THE CASE FOR ON-SITE INSPECTIONS South Africa has decided to block arms exports to Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Oman and Algeria after these countries refused to allow South African officials to inspect their facilities to verify compliance with the South African National Conventional Arms Control Act and South African National Conventional Arms Control Regulations. The clause in the end-us


Defence-related companies in Africa

January 1, 2020

Africa’s domestic defence industry remains relatively unknown. Therefore, the International Peace Information Service (IPIS) and Omega Research Foundation have compiled a database of the main entities comprising this industry, including companies that manufacture, assemble or maintain: arms and ammunition; aeronautical components; vehicles; as well as importing and management companies. This data


Arms Trade Bulletin September – October 2019

November 22, 2019

EDITORIAL “The Kurds ‘didn’t help us’ in Normandy” On 8 October the invasion of northern Syria by Turkey began with air strikes on the positions of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). This military offensive came after a telephone call between president Trump and president Erdogan on 6 October. Trump had agreed to withdraw U.S. troops from northern Syria. The U.S. media speculate that Trump’s will


Arms Trade Bulletin July – August 2019

September 10, 2019

Gender-Based Violence and Arms Transfer Controls – is it still just talk and no real action? The Fifth Conference of States Parties (CSP5) to the Arms Trade Treaty was being held in Geneva between 26th and 30th August 2019. The theme of CSP5 was gender and gender based violence (GBV), which is a very widespread problem worldwide, fuelled as it is by dominant cultures that equate masculinity with t


Arms Trade Bulletin May – June 2019

July 19, 2019

Arms proliferation still undermining peace prospects in Libya   The chaos within Libya has given rise to a score of armed groups. Porous borders and the cross-border proliferation of arms and ammunition enables these armed groups to engage in a wide variety of illegal activities, which in turn undermine peace and security in Libya and the neighbouring countries. Weapons from Libya’s stockpile


Anti-Diversion Measures. Real-Time Locating Systems

May 20, 2019

Diversion is largely a self-inflicted problem that stems from negligence by states, militaries, and civilians (Small Arms Survey, 2008). The illicit trade of small arms and light weapons remains a serious problem internationally and in many countries. To prevent the illicit trade States call for responsible arms export control systems to be put in place. One solution is to prevent diversion, mostl


Arms Trade Bulletin March-April 2019

May 7, 2019

UK arms supplies to Saudi Arabia – a view from London   “This is the fourth anniversary of the latest stage of a terrible conflict. Britain will do everything possible to ensure that Yemen’s people do not have to suffer a fifth.” These were the words of the Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt in March 2019, on the fourth anniversary of the Saudi-led bombing of Yemen. That same day, Saudi-led forces bom


Arms Trade Bulletin – December 2018 – February 2019

March 1, 2019

STOP ARMING YEMEN THE VIEW FROM PARIS By Benoît Muracciole and Jean Claude Alt for ASER All parties involved in the war in Yemen continue to plunge the population into what the United Nations Secretary General has denounced as “the planet’s worst humanitarian crisis.” One estimate put the death toll at nearly 60,000 since 2016. Hostilities between the Saudi Arabia-led Coalition and the Houthi and


Arms Trade Highlights October-November 2018

November 20, 2018

EDITORIAL No Common Position By Frank Slijper – PAX The murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in October put the Saudi royal family under more pressure than the immense human suffering in Yemen largely caused by a coalition led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Especially for Yemenites, the public outcry after Khashoggi’s killing  is a cynical co


Arms Trade Highlights July-September 2018

October 26, 2018

“A high rate of access to firearms results in a high rate of intentional deaths with firearms (e.g. homicides and suicides)”. That is the conclusion of a new study on “Global Mortality from Firearms, 1990-2016” in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The research was done by the Global Burden of Disease 2016 Injury Collaborators at various universities and research centres. The authors


Module 01

E-learning: The Arms Trade Treaty

September 7, 2017

In June 2017, IPIS launched its e-learning digital education package to support the early ratification and effective implementation of the Arms Trade Treaty. The Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) was adopted by the UNGA on 2 April 2013 and entered into force on 24 December 2014. There are currently 92  States Parties and 130 Signatories. Implementation of the Treaty is the responsibility of States Parties,


Surplus and Illegal Small Arms, Light Weapons and their Ammunition: the consequences of failing to dispose and safely destroy them

August 11, 2017

This joint report by IANSA and IPIS documents recent failures in some countries across world regions to properly dispose of and destroy excess small arms and light weapons (SALW), and their ammunition. It illustrates the different ways that excessive, poorly secured, weapons, especially firearms and ammunition, leak out into the hands of abusers and to those unauthorised to trade and use them, and


Fatal Freight: Ships, Guns and Human Rights Abuses

June 12, 2017

TransArms and IPIS undertook a thorough research of the responsibilities of states and companies involved in the transfer of military equipment by sea under customary international law. The maritime transport is by far the main modality for the transfers of military equipment and commodities.  The report considers cases of irresponsible shipments of arms and military commodities to countries with


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