Jamaica approves OAS assistance to fight illicit gun trade
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Friday December 9, 2011 – Cabinet has approved the country entering into an agreement with the Organisation of American States (OAS) for the provision of Firearms Laser Marking Machines more than a month after Trinidad and Tobago received similar assistance.
The machines would provide traceable markings on the estimated 25,000 legal firearms in the country.
National Security Minister Dwight Nelson said this would form part of a small arms policy being developed for Jamaica.
“The agreement with the OAS is an agreement with the Caribbean pursuant to increasing Caribbean national security” he said.
“The machines impose on the firearms certain traceable markings that are not easily erased if they fall in criminal hands.”
During last month’s donation of a firearms marking machine to Trinidad and Tobago, OAS Secretary General José Miguel Insulza said the organization was aiming to have effective policies and legislation in place in each member state to deal with the illicit gun trade.
“Through these and other initiatives, the OAS will continue to promote efforts that strengthen the capacity of all member states to respond quickly and efficiently to the growing levels of crime and violence generated by firearms trafficking,” he said.