SAMARASINHA HAILS SAFE STORAGE OF LIGHT AND SMALL ARMS STOCKPILES PROJECT IN BELARUS
UN/UNDP Resident Coordinator in Belarus Sanaka Samarasinha praised the progress made in the implementation of the project on Safe Storage of Light and Small Arms Stockpiles conducted jointly by OSCE, EU, UNDP and the Defense Ministry of the Republic of Belarus. Sanaka Samarasinha took part in an opening ceremony for a number of modernized facilities – a repair shop and a storage area for light and small arms stockpiles in one of the military units of Gomel.
According to the coordinator, the implementation of the project will help to align the practices of light and small arms storage with the recommendations contained in the UN comprehensive regulations on disarmament. “It will promote stability in Central and Eastern Europe through strengthening security in the stores of light and small arms to reduce the proliferation risks,” Sanaka Samarasinha said at the briefing.
Under the project, the storehouses for light and small arms have been renovated, with the installation of perimeter fences, intrusion protection systems, fire alarm systems, perimeter alarms, indoor and outdoor lighting systems. 13 military units have been supplied with equipment and materials to strengthen security in the stores, as well as the required fire safety equipment.
The OSCE and EU states have so far allocated almost $3.3 million. The money will be used to modernize seven military units. About $4.6 million is necessary to complete the project.
Head of the EU Delegation in Belarus Maira Mora, who also took part in the opening ceremony, told media: “This is an investment in important things. As the military say, no cases of loss of small arms have been registered in Belarus so far. However, the country spent more money on the security systems than it will after the modernization.”