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23.02.2005 General News

Outlawing of small arms, necessity for national security, development

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Ho, Feb. 23, GNA - Mr Kwadwo Asante, Assistant Consultant of Yankah and Associates on Monday said the outlawing of the local manufacture of small arms remains the only practical way of curtailing the proliferation of small arms in the country.

Mr Asante was responding to questions at a Press briefing at Ho on the campaign against small arms and light weapons in Ghana, being organised by the Ghana National Commission on Small Arms.

He said Ghana's position on the local manufacture of small arms was in conformity with the ECOWAS moratorium on the import, export and manufacture of light weapons.

Mr Asante said the elimination of illicit weapons in the country was a necessary condition for securing and maintaining national stability, security and development.

He said the campaign against the proliferation of such arms therefore, required the media's fullest support and commitment to be successful. Mr Asante said though the country was perceived to be peaceful there were several uncomfortable situations, which have often led to bloody clashes in which small arms were used by the feuding parties.

According to him, there are a conservative estimate of 100,000 illegal small arms in the country, which were accumulated over a short period as against 400,000 legally registered small arms since 1955.

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