Control of arms transfers in French-speaking sub-Saharan African States

As part of this project undertaken at the initiative of the Delegation for Strategic Affairs of the Ministry of Defence (France), GRIP conducted an assessment of arms transfer control systems put in place by French-speaking States in Sub-Saharan Africa.

This study analyses the national conventional arms control systems in the twenty-two French-speaking countries in sub-Saharan Africa: Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Comoros, Côte d'Ivoire, Djibouti, Gabon, Guinea, Equatorial Guinea, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Central African Republic (CAR), the Republic of the Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Chad and Togo. The first part of the study outlines the role of these States in the international arms trade. National arms transfer control systems are then analysed through a comparison of national regulation and legislation as well as the procedures in place in each of the 16 States for which information is available. The third part presents the four regional legal instruments on small arms and light weapons (SALW) existing in Africa and the possible impact on conventional arms issues. Finally, the main challenges faced by the States in the context of the ATT negotiations are discussed.

Timeframe: July to November 2010.

Supported by the Delegation for Strategic Affairs of the Ministry of Defence (France).

Lead Researchers: Cédric PoitevinVirginie Moreau and Jihan Seniora.