West African Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA)

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The President of the West African Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA) and Co-Chair of the IANSA International Advisory Committee, Baffour Amoa, was received by the Presidency of Cote d'Ivoire, where he took the opportunity to bring attention to the Week of Action and request Cote d’Ivoire's support for a strong and robust ATT during the Diplomatic Conference in July. Visiting Cote d’Ivoire from 10-15 June, the President of WAANSA also called on civil society to join the movement against gun violence and the proliferation of small arms.

On April 26-27, representatives of civil society and the Control Arms coalition met with 15 member states from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in Abuja, Nigeria. Discussions focused on strengthening the ECOWAS common position on the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) ahead of the final ATT negotiations in July.

On 20 March, IANSA members hosted a press conference in Bamako, Mali, on the campaign for a strong Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) to help prevent serious human rights abuses and atrocities committed with small arms.

In Accra, Ghana, personnel from across the security sector including the armed forces, police and the National Commission on Small Arms, were trained in firearms marking and record keeping from 7-9 March.

In Senegal, civilian gun carrying will be prohibited from 4 January through to 30 April this year. The move is part of efforts to prevent violent clashes around the presidential elections, scheduled for 26 February.

Dickson Nkemakonam Orji of the West African Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA) -Nigeria was designated the chair of a meeting of governmental experts on marking and tracing of small arms, held in Bamako, Mali from 6 – 8 December.

The Benin national section of the West African Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA) engaged with students, politicians and journalists to ensure the widest possible coverage of the week.

In West Africa, activities have been organised by several national networks that are members of WAANSA, the West African Action Network on Small Arms.

The West Africa Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA- Burkina) launched the Global Week of Action Against Gun Violence with a press release announcing the main themes and activities for the week in Burkina Faso.

Michele Pepe of the West Africa Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA) and UNIFEM spoke to an assembly of more than 800 army recruits at a meeting in Cote d’Ivoire on 6 October.

1500 locally produced firearms have been destroyed in Asuki, Ghana.

The Cote d’Ivoire section of the West African Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA-CI), in collaboration with the National Commission to Combat the Proliferation and Illicit Circulation of Small Arms and Light Weapons, has launched a campaign for elections free from armed violence.

On 23rd August 2010, the West African Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA) held a civil society forum in Accra, Ghana.

The West African Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA) participated in the regional seminar “Towards strengthening the role of Parliaments in crisis prevention and recovery in West Africa” in Accra, Ghana, on 28-29 June.

IANSA members in West Africa are keeping track of states’ implementation of the ECOWAS convention on their websites.