4th RASR Workshop
The Fourth Workshop on Regional Approach to Stockpile Reduction (RASR) of weapons/ammunition was hosted by ITF in Ljubljana, from 23 to 25 May 2011. The ultimate aim of RASR that has been initiated by the US Department of State and where ITF is a member of Steering Committee is to enhance regional security in South East Europe and to prevent disastrous explosions or destabilizing diversions of conventional weapons and ammunitions. RASR encourages affected governments to develop a pro-active, coordinated, regional approach to secure and destroy SA/LW, by building local capacity and pooling resources in order to maximize their efficiency. Explosions of weapon/ammunition magazines nowadays happen more often and pose bigger danger to population, because more and more people are living in proximity of these magazines that are poorly maintained.
The main aim of this workshop and other RASR workshops that are held periodically every 6 months is to share best practices and lessons learned and to discuss how to prevent explosions and other accidents in weapon/ammunition storages that are poorly maintained and therefore poses real danger.
On the workshop Mr Dorijan Marši?, ITF Director stressed that destruction of stockpiled weapons and ammunition falls under ITF´s second goal within ITF Strategy 2009-2013. ITF has plenty experience from implementing mine action activities and can therefore share priceless knowledge and experience with other RASR members to prevent accidents in weapon/ammunition storages. ITF is already implementing projects in the area, such as demilitarization after explosion of ammunition depot in Albania (Gerdec) and in Bulgaria (Chelopechene).
Active members of RASR Steering Committee are ITF, Small Arms Survey (SAS), South Eastern and Eastern Europe Clearinghouse for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons (SEESAC), Centre for Security Cooperation (RACVIAC) and NATO Maintenance and Supply Agency.