South East European Criminal Police Raise Capacities to Counter Latest Threats of Misuse, Trafficking, and Illicit Possession of Firearms

Threats posed by misuse, trafficking, and illegal possession of small arms and light weapons are constantly evolving. To discuss the latest threats in the area and the ways forward in fighting them and reducing the potential harm, SEESAC organised the Regional Meeting of Criminal Police Representatives from the Western Balkans and the Republic of Moldova which took place in Skopje, North Macedonia, on 25-26 April 2023.

The authorities discussed the challenges in combating firearms trafficking, including interinstitutional and international cooperation and information exchange, and explored the results and recommendations of the needs assessment reports on the Crime Scene Investigation units in the South East European jurisdictions developed by SEESAC.

Furthermore, the participants got acquainted with the weapons used in the war in Ukraine according to open sources and deliberated the latest trends in arms trafficking across the European continent. Finally, the authorities got introduced to the methodology for the upcoming SEESAC-delivered trainings for the law enforcement representatives.

The criminal police play a critical role in preventing and reducing misuse, trafficking, and illegal possession of small arms and light weapons and its components. Through this two-day meeting, SEESAC aimed at empowering regional cooperation, knowledge exchange, and information‐sharing among investigators in Southeast Europe.

The meeting was organised with the EU support provided through the EU Council Decision 2019/2111 in support of arms control activities in South East Europe.