In July 2006, the Small Arms Survey launched a set of Small Arms ID Cards to aid in the visual identification of a selection of firearms commonly used in contemporary armed conflict and crime. Accurate reporting on small arms and light weapons is essential for research, analysis, and, ultimately, policy-making aimed at curbing their illicit proliferation. These cards have been requested by peacekeepers and researchers in countries as diverse as Afghanistan and Uganda.
This blog post was published as part of the Global Partnership on Small Arms project, which was managed by the Small Arms Survey and funded by the German Federal Foreign Office.
The Global Partnership on Small Arms was a platform where stakeholders engaged in reducing or preventing illicit arms trafficking were able to interact; exchange information, experience, and knowledge; and give feedback to further their shared goals.
Arms and ammunition are evidence. Many weapons carry marks that, combined with their physical characteristics, reveal important information about them, including their manufacturer, age, and origin. This information, in turn, provides vital clues about the sources and flows of weapons in the area in which they were found.