Updated: 28-Jul-2003 July 2003

15 July 2003

KFOR confiscates illegal weapons

15/07/2003 - KFOR
Press release
Key links
KFOR web site
Fifteen rifles and pistols, 21 rockets and anti tank weapons, 41 miscellaneous items and 406 rounds of ammunition were seized by NATO-led peacekeeping troops in Kosovo (KFOR), in conjunction with the UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo Police and the Kosovo Police Service.

KFOR has been leading intelligence operations to disarm targeted individuals for several years now. It also undertakes searches for illegal weapon depots and coordinates its efforts with initiatives led by other international organisations and the local authorities.

In early July, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) launched a three-month long public awareness campaign against small arms in Kosovo. The beginning of the campaign was marked by the publication of a report on "Kosovo and the Gun", commissioned by the UNDP and written by the Small Arms Survey in Switzerland. The report reveals that some 500,000 people around the world die from small arms every year and that there are between 330,000 and 460,000 firearms in civilian hands in Kosovo, most of which are unregistered and uncontrolled.

The widespread availability and misuse of weapons make it more difficult to introduce a culture of rule of law and a sense of security in the province. However, surveys conducted for the UNDP report indicate that there is public support to deal with the problem.