African Union Commission and Small Arms Survey

Weapons Compass: Mapping Illicit Small Arms Flows in Africa


The 28th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the Union, held in January 2017, adopted the African Union (AU) Master Roadmap of Practical Steps to Silence the Guns in Africa by Year 2020 (AU Roadmap). The AU Roadmap encompasses practical steps and modalities for action to address the underlying drivers of conflict, as well as the tools and enablers of violence, including preventing the illicit flows of weapons on the continent and to conflict zones. To provide AU policy organs and member states with more comprehensive and updated analysis, the AU Commission partnered with the Small Arms Survey in undertaking a regional mapping of illicit arms flows. This report provides a synthesis of relevant information on the subject collected from AU member states, regional economic communities (RECs), regional bodies with a small arms mandate (RBs), and specialized civil society entities. In doing so, the report aims to help identify policy-relevant trends and patterns in illicit small arms proliferation in Africa, as well as remaining policy and knowledge gaps.