Choosing Life Without Weapons
UNDP Resident Representative Yuri Afanasiev and Republic of Srpska Minister of Interior Radislav Jovičić announced the launch of the campaign “Choose Life Without Weapons“, aiming to collect illegally possessed small arms and light weapons. As of September 1st 2013, all citizens will be able to freely and without fear of sanctions hand over weapons and explosive devices.
„UNDP estimates that there are almost 750,000 illicit weapons in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This urges immediate action and is a reason why we are jointly launching the first weapons collection campaign of such magnitude since 1995. Collecting weapons that people are willing to give up and legalization of the weapons that can be legalized are the main campaign goals. We believe the time has come for people to realise that there is no return to the past, and that we don’t want our children to grow up surrounded with weaponry in the house. We will engage civil society organizations, women's associations, veterans associations and others to help us in this endeavour”, stated Mr. Yuri Afanasiev, UNDP Resident Representative.
The campaign will be carried out simultaneously throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina by the Ministry of Interior of Republic of Srpska, The Federal Ministry of Interior, Brčko District Police, Cantonal Ministries of Interior, with the support of UNDP, the British Embassy to Bosnia and Herzegovina, the International Committee of Red Cross, OSCE and EUFOR.
“There will be no sanctions for all those who hand over weapons they illegally possess“, said Minister Jovičić, adding that the launch of the campaign coincides with the implementation of the Law on Amnesty for Illegal Possession of Explosive Devices and Illegal Firearms in Republic of Srpska. Minister Jovičić emphasized the necessity of handing over illegally possessed weapons by highlighting two recent incidents in Kozarska Dubica when several people were almost killed with explosive devices.
To hand over weapons or get informed how and where to do it, citizens can dial 122 (Police).