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Jamaica, OAS team up to tighten security on firearms

Published:Thursday | December 8, 2011 | 9:22 AM

Jerome Reynolds, Gleaner Writer



The Government is moving to tighten security on firearms with plans to introduce a new mechanism to trace guns.



National Security Minister Senator Dwight Nelson has disclosed that his ministry will be partnering with the Organisation of American States (OAS), to obtain machines that will imprint security features on firearms.



Senator Nelson said the system will be applied to firearms issued to private citizens as well as members of the security forces.



There are currently 25,000 licensed firearm holders in Jamaica.



Senator Nelson said the initiative is part of plans by the government to bring about a policy on small arms.



Jamaica has repeatedly complained that the ease at which small arms leave developed countries and are trafficked to the Caribbean, has been one of the problems fueling crime.



The national security minister said the new system of tagging firearms is in keeping with a wider effort to tighten security in the region.



He said an agreement is to be signed shortly with the OAS for the provision of the machines and that the new programme will be rolled out soon after.



jerome.reynolds@gleanerjm.com