Notes: As part of a study on the mechanics of small arms trafficking, the Small Arms Survey acquired summaries of ‘unfavorable determinations’ resulting from end-use checks of potential and completed exports of firearms from the United States. The checks were performed by the US Department of State as part of the Blue Lantern end-use monitoring program. Among the more intriguing cases are
– The unauthorized re-export of ‘military-grade assault rifles’ from the armed forces of a former Soviet Republic to private end-users in Central America. The re-export was discovered during a post-shipment check, which also revealed inadequate record-keeping and ‘insufficient inventory controls’.
– An apparent attempt to divert a ‘large volume’ of AK-pattern rifles ostensibly intended for a Central American military. A pre-shipment brokering check revealed that the military in question had no knowledge of the proposed export.
– The manufacture of ‘unlicensed replicas’ of exported firearms by a private reseller in South Asia.
The cases underscore the value of robust pre- and post-shipment monitoring of small arms exports. While most exporting states regularly engage in pre-shipment licensing reviews, far fewer actually check on their weapons after they are exported. Some of these incidents may not have been discovered had the US government not conducted post-shipment checks.
For more information on US end-use monitoring, see the annual reports on the Blue Lantern program. For more information on arms trafficking from the US, see ‘Dribs and Drabs: The Mechanics of Small Arms Trafficking from the United States.‘