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Grillot, Suzette R. 2003 ‘Ukraine: Background and Overview.’ Small Arms Control in the Black Sea Region: A regional assessment of small arms control initiatives; Eurasia Series No. 2, p. 33. London: International Alert, Security and Peacebuilding Programme. 1 December

Relevant contents

Ukraine: Background and Overview

Millions of SALW, and hundreds of thousands of tonnes of munitions remained in Ukraine as Soviet forces withdrew to Russia. (171) The new state did not need such an enormous arsenal since it did not face serious security threats; rather, it was in need of financial resources. Thus, the Ukrainian Government decided to sell its inherited stockpiles. (172)

Former Soviet arms worth of billions of U.S. dollars were sold to customers of all kinds, including those involved in violent conflicts and human rights abuses. (173) Ukrainian officials admit that weapons sales in the early 1990s were not subject to strict export control procedures. (174)

Ukrainian parliamentary committee investigating arms transfers in the country found that between 1992 and 1998 USD 32 billion worth of armaments were either lost or stolen in Ukraine. (175)

The Ukrainian Government has been accused of massive corruption in connection to the sale of the
country's military goods, though officials vehemently deny such accusations. (176)

Sources cited:

171) On the Ukrainian military-industrial complex and the country's inheritance, see Belosludtzev, O. Military Policy and Mility-Industrial Complex of Ukraine, Center for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies, Moscow, September/October 2000, found at http://www.cast.ru/english/publish/index.html. Also see details about Ukrainian military issues at http://www.defense-ua.com.

172) Author's interviews with Ukrainian officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, with former government officials at the Ministry of Economy, and with non-governmental experts and analysts, Kiev, Ukraine, February/March 2003.

173) See details about allegations of SALW misconduct below.

174) Author's interviews with Ukrainian officials from the State Service for Export Control, Kiev, Ukraine, February/March 2003.

175)See "Illegal Arms Sales from Ukraine", PBS.org, May 2002, found at http://www.nisat.org; and "Russian Daily Feature on Alleged Arms Dealer Victor Bout" Komsomolskaya Pravda, 27 February 2002, p. 4, found at http://www.nisat.org.

176) See "High Level Ukrainian Officials Tied to Illegal Arms Exports", Versiya, 31 July 2001, found at http://www.nisat.org; Fitin, B. "High Level Ukrainian Officials are Patrons of Illegal Arms Dealing" Versiya, 7 August 2001, found at http:/www.iansa.org/news/2001/aug_01/ill_deal.htm; and author's interviews with Ukrainian officials from the State Service for Export Control, from Ukrspetseksport, and from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kiev, Ukraine, February/March 2003. For more on corruption in Ukraine, see the country's ranking (85th out of 102 countries ranked) by Transparency International at http://www.transparency.org/presspreleases_archives/2002/2002.08.28 .cpi.en.html.

ID: Q109

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