Liberia has known decades of conflict. Despite reaching a peace agreement in 2003, the country is still facing the proliferation of weapons and ammunition on its territory. While the proper management of weapons and ammunition is high on the Liberian MoD’s post-conflict priorities, international support is still needed to achieve these objectives.1 Some unexploded ordnance (UXO) are left mainly in the country’s northern region and also require clearance work.2
The African Union, ECOWAS, RECSA, UNREC, UNIDIR, BICC, MAG and MSAG have been on the ground to support the through-life management of ammunition and the prevention of illicit ammunition flows by working with the Liberian MoD. Efforts have included Weapons and Ammunition Management (WAM) training courses, Physical Security and Stockpile Management (PSSM) seminars on developing regional expertise in ammunition management, an assessment of Liberia’s national plan to manage ammunition, and providing technical advice on ammunition-related questions.3
“Accra Peace Agreement.” Peace Accords Matrix, October 11, 2019. peaceaccords.nd.edu/accord/accra-peace-agreement. UNIDIR. « Country Insights Series : Liberia Weapons and Ammunition Management. » Published in 2020.https://unidir.org/sites/default/files/2020-11/Liberia%20-%20WAM%20Country%20Insight.pdf
2GICHD. “Action on Armed Violence Post-Conflict Rehabilitation and Reintegration: Liberia Case Study.” Published in September 2012. https://www.gichd.org/fileadmin/GICHD/topics/development/ma_development-2/AVR/AVR-Liberia-case-study-Sep2012.pdf
3See AMAP Dataset.
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Since the beginning of data collection in 1979 by the Small Arms Survey, there have been no accidental explosions reported in Liberia.
Source: Small Arms Survey. n.d. Unplanned Explosions at Munitions Sites (UEMS). Database.
Cases of diversion
Some cases of diversion have been reported since 2000 in Liberia (Table 2).
Table 1: Cases of diversion of arms, ammunition, and explosives in Liberia since 2000
The Liberia National Police retrieved another stolen UNMIL M-16 weapon.
Three men were arrested in possession of one AK-47 with 21 live bullets stolen from UNMIL stocks.
Source: “Liberia: Police Arrest Three With 'Stolen' Unmil Arm.” AllAfrica, July 24, 2012. https://allafrica.com/stories/201207241011.html. “Liberia: In Connection With Unmil Stolen Weapons - Police Arrest Two More Suspects.” AllAfrica, July 25, 2012. https://allafrica.com/stories/201207280520.html.
Insufficient information on the disposal of ammunition in Liberia.
To further enhance safe and secure ammunition management, the following needs have been identified for Liberia:
- Development or refinement of standards and procedures on stockpile management
- Capacity development for the destruction of surplus stockpile
Source: PoA Report 2020, Liberia. Please note that PoA reports focus on SALW and not specifically on ammunition. https://unoda-poa.s3.amazonaws.com/reports/LBR-English-1037-SUBMITTED.pdf