Peacekeeping is getting more dangerous. Illicit arms, ammunition, and explosives are key factors in this increasingly hostile environment.
The United Nations needs to adapt to ensure the safety of peacekeepers and their ability to implement mandated tasks. The United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) illustrates both the possible dangers to current missions as well as lessons learned in efforts to mitigate the impact of illicit arms.
This brief reviews MINUSMA’s experiences in these regards. It argues that greater efforts should be made to exploit the potential role of peacekeeping operations in monitoring and tracing illicit arms flows to enhance situational awareness and the fight against impunity.