Deputy Minister ZEKA
Mr. QALAJ, General Director of Police,
Mr. HYSENI, Acting Director of the Department for Support Services,
I would like to thank you all for the excellent cooperation in making Kosovo a safer place for all. I would particularly like to thank the UN Trust Facility Supporting Cooperation on Arms Regulation (UNSCAR) for their continuous support.
Since 2008, Kosovo Safety and Security Project has been contributing to small arms control – addressing issues related to laws, production, registration, storage and inventory management, awareness raising, disarmament, demobilization and reintegration, as well as international trade.
Illicit arms give rise to violence, insecurity and injustice. In line with Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, we are committed to the reduction of illicit arms flows and, reduction of all forms of violence and related deaths everywhere. This project contributes to the achievement of these targets.
A year ago, the United Nations Secretary-General announced his new disarmament agenda - “Securing Our Common Future”. Soon after, the EU launched its "Securing Arms, Protecting Citizens" strategy. In December, the Roadmap for sustainable solution to the illegal possession, misuse and trafficking of Small Arms Light Weapons and ammunition in the Western Balkans by 2024 was approved.
I would like to congratulate the Kosovo authorities for being the first ones in the region to approve its Small Arms and Light Weapons strategy and action plan. UNDP stands ready to provide its full support for the implementation of the planned actions.
One of the concrete actions is the firearms legalization campaign. The campaign was recently extended until 17 September, encouraged by the success over the first months - with 1,428 requests for legalization.
UNDP Kosovo will continue to support this initiative now under financial contribution of UNSCAR. Based on the joint assessment, 36 computers have been purchased to be used at 36 police stations by the Kosovo Police personnel in charge of registration of the legalization requests.
We hope that as many people as possible will take advantage of the legalization campaign during its last month of implementation!