From 17 to 18 July 2019, UNODC through its Global Firearms Programme (GFP), in collaboration with the Plurinational State of Bolivia, organised an inter-institutional workshop. Its overall objective was to train prosecutors and judges from Bolivia to more effectively implement the national legislation on the control of firearms, ammunition, explosives and related materials, namely, Act 400 and its relevant regulations.
The workshop was inaugurated with an opening ceremony where the Minister of Government, Mr Carlos Romero Bonifaz, and the UNODC Representative in Bolivia, Mr Thierry Rostan, gave a welcoming speech. Mrs Simonetta Grassi, Head the Global Firearms Programme, also addressed the participants and presented the objectives and methodology of the workshop.
Over the two days' workshop, speakers then addressed a number of relevant topics during different sessions, such as: which attributions and competences are conferred under Law 400; harmonisation of the technical language on firearms to enhance inter-institutional cooperation; the functioning of national registries of firearms and tracing mechanisms to encourage effective investigations after their seizures; criminal definitions and their constituent elements; national and international tracing requests of firearms as part of the investigations and prosecutions; existing mechanisms and tools for international cooperation within UNTOC and the Firearms Protocol; and final disposition of seized firearms.
The experts counted with experts from National Police, Ministry of Defence, INTERPOL and UNODC among the speakers, who taught the participants about the theory and practice of firearms and the importance of their proper identification. Moreover, it also increased collective knowledge and enhanced the use of common language on firearms among professionals and institutions, which would facilitate their cooperation and better prevent and combat the illicit trafficking in Bolivia.
This workshop was developed in the framework of UNODC's Global Firearms Programme and funded by the European Union.