The government of Fiji has over the past year, with the assistance of the Pacific Small Arms Action Group (PSAAG), been actively reviewing their current arms control system – including their position on the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). On May 11 – 13, Fiji’s Ministry of Defence and PSAAG held a three-day national workshop in Suva, Fiji to review national firearms legislation, the UNPoA provision and potential gaps in their arms control system.
Over 30 representatives from Fiji’s Military Forces, Police, Customs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Correctional Services attended the workshop. They were joined by representatives from Australia’s Defence and Customs to share lessons learnt on Treaty implementation. Civil society was also represented including two PSAAG members who presented on ISACS and the link between ATT and gender issues.
With the assistance of Rachel Stohl and the ATT Baseline Assessment Project, the workshop also aimed to help Fijian officials better understand ATT obligations and complete their Baseline Assessment Survey. As an outcome, areas of Fiji’s current compliance as well as potential gaps and/or resource needs to support effective treaty implementation were identified.
The workshop was opened by the Ministry of Defence’s Permanent Secretary – sharing positive views towards the ratification of the Treaty. These views were featured in theNational Fiji newspaper the following day. This workshop demonstrated that Fiji already has a large majority of procedures in place to be Treaty compliant. The hope is this will act as a final step towards recommending Fiji’s ratification to parliament within the coming year.
For more on the workshop
‘Arms Trade Treaty awareness’ The Fiji Times Online
‘Stakeholder Meet to Discuss Arms Trade Treaty’ Fiji Sun Online
‘Keeping Illegal Trade of Arms Out of Fiji’ Fiji Broadcasting Incorporation
For more information or a copy of the workshop outcome document – contact Laura Spano on info@