Citation(s) from the literature library

European Commission. 2013 ‘Firearms and the Internal Security of the EU: Protecting Citizens and Disrupting Illegal Trafficking.’ Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament; COM(2013) 716 final. Brussels: 21 October

Relevant contents


Large amounts of powerful military grade weapons have since the mid-1990s reached the EU from the Western Balkans and former Soviet Bloc countries,(11) often trafficked in small quantities and hidden in vehicles like long distance coaches to avoid detection.(12)


11) Precise estimates of the size of these stores are impossible, and those available vary widely, partly because volumes are dynamic. In one recent study, defence stockpiles in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2011 were estimated at 76 000 pieces of small arms and light weapons and 100 000 metric tonnes of ammunition, and in Montenegro in 2011 at 28 000 weapons and 7000 metric tonnes of ammunition; Pierre Gobinet, 'Significant Surpluses: Weapons and Ammunition Stockpiles in South-east Europe', Small Arms Survey, The Regional Approach to Stockpile Reduction and the US Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement, Dec 2011.

12) Source: European Firearms Expert group; Convertible Weapons in the Western Balkans, SEESAC, 2009. In UK in 2010/11 63% of the 2534 stolen firearms were stolen from residential premises; Homicides, Firearms Offences and Intimate Violence 2010/11: Supplementary Volume 2 to Crime in England and Wales 2010/11, Kevin Smith et al, Home Office Statistical Bulletin 2012.

[EU = European Union; SEESAC = The South Eastern and Eastern Europe Clearinghouse for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons; UK = United Kingdom]

ID: Q8229

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