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Sudan Human Security Baseline Assessment. 2009 ‘Estimating Holdings.’ Supply and Demand: Arms Flows and Holdings in Sudan; Sudan Issue Brief No. 15, p. 9. Geneva: Small Arms Survey. 1 December

Relevant contents

Estimating Holdings

We estimate that Khartoum's vast network of state security forces possess some 470,000 small arms and light weapons. The SPLA may possess some 200,000 firearms. More than just the quantitative advantage, the quality, sophistication, and condition of the weapons held by Khartoum are considerably better overall than those held by the SPLA.

Civilians and armed groups are believed to possess many more weapons than the Sudanese state security forces and SPLA combined. We estimate the average civilian holdings in the 10 Southern states to be twice that of the 15 Northern states. The weighted average is a little below 5 per 100. With some 40 million inhabitants, we put civilian holdings at roughly 2 million. A minuscule percentage of these weapons are registered with authorities. (For example, as of 2007, the Khartoum government reported the number of registered weapons among the civilian populace at fewer than 10,000.)

Armed groups in Darfur, including Chadian insurgent groups, probably possess more than 25,000 firearms, including mostly assault rifles, but also numerous examples of machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades, and more sophisticated light weapons such as MANPADS, multiple-barrel 107 mm rocket launchers, and 82 mm recoilless anti-tank guns.

[MANPADS = Man-portable air-defense systems; SPLA = Sudan People's Liberation Army]

ID: Q5207

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