Strategic arms limitation is carrying on for six months [Archives:2007/1073/Local News]

August 2 2007

SANA'A, August 1) a security expedition was undertaken, last week, to collect heavy and medium arms, which are considered to pose one of the biggest threats to Yemen's security. Based on the strategy that aimed to collect arms and compensate their owners, Jihana souk of arms, 40 km from Sana'a, was closed during this expedition, according to 26 September newspaper.

A source in the Ministry of Interior indicated that the strategic arms limitation is applied by the Ministry so as to collect heavy and medium sized arms; however, there is another strategy for carrying and acquiring personal weapons. The expedition will last for six months, after that; the Ministry is going to confiscate any guns from their owners. The government allocates milliard of YRs so as to put an end to arms trade and limit the phenomena of carrying arms, particularly among Yemeni tribes, the source added.

The Minister of Interior confirmed the importance of differentiating between collecting heavy and medium sized arms and acquiring personal weapons. The law does not prevent citizens from having small arms since he has a license.

According to the Ministry, the laws that systemize carrying arms do not take away the right of the Yemeni citizens to carry personal arms as many claimed. On the contrary, these laws confirmed their rights. At the same time, the authority will combat the illegal acquisition of the heavy and medium size arms, which are not only violating the rules but also are creating dangers in the society.

According to some studies, Yemen lost 180 milliard dollars as a result of misuse of personal arms. Also, 50 % of crimes, in the last four years, were due to the misuse of arms, according to an official statistics published by the Ministry of Interior.

The Ministry of Defense as well as of Interior displayed recently an arsenal of thousands of heavy and medium arms collected from citizens. It contained carried missiles, tanks, bombs, bazookas, and mines.