In the race against violence every minute counts: someone in the world is killed by a gun every minute, and in most cases this is an innocent victim. Consider that 90 percent of civilian casualties in modern conflicts are caused by small arms, then ask yourself where these arms come from and who benefits from making them available? The answer is: more than 1,000 companies globally are involved in the production of small arms and ammunition, which fuels a black market for small arms trade worth an estimated $2-10 billion.
The lack of arms controls allows some to profit from the misery of others.
- While international attention is focused on the need to control weapons of mass destruction, the trade in conventional weapons continues to operate in a legal and moral vacuum.
- More and more countries are starting to produce small arms, many with little ability or will to regulate their use.
- Arms get into the wrong hands through weak controls on firearm ownership, weapons management, and misuse by authorised users of weapons.
The availability of small arms results in over 600 million firearms in the world today, of which just over half is legally held by civilians. Changing the "every minute" statistic will require the implementation of policies that will diminish the small arms black markets and make the production and distribution of small arms less financially attractive. Contravim will work to develop such policies across the world.