Liberia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ambassador Dee-Maxwell Kemayah, has urged all UN Member States to collectively do more to make the world a safer place, free of nuclear arsenals and the illegal trade and circulation of small arms and light weapons (SALW). Expressing concern about the increasing threats to global peace and security, especially the new wave of terrorism, Ambassador Kemayah said a safer world could only be achieved if words are accompanied by actions. “It is not what we say that would matter to us or our children, but the positive actions implemented to make our global village safe that would bring joy to our kids, and secure hope for generations to come says Ambassador Kemayah. The Liberian permanent Representative liamented together, the globe can and must act now”. Ambassador Kemayah who addressed for the first time, the General Debate of the United Nations Disarmament and International Security Committee said there was a critical need for increased multilateral approaches to complement unilateral and bilateral efforts, stressing that it has proven to be the best way of addressing matters of international peace and security.
Ambassador Kemayah told the First Committee that Liberia as a country, which knows first-hand the devastating humanitarian and economic consequences of small arms and light weapons, had made great strides nationally in combating threats to the Country’s peace and security. He named the strengthening of the country’s legal framework-(its national laws), regulations and administrative procedures, the conduct of the first Weapons and Ammunition Management (WAM) study in the country since the end of the civil crisis in 2003, and the marking and recording of all state-owned firearms from 2016 to 2018 as major achievements.The Liberian Ambassador further stated that Government through its National Development Policy—the Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD) would endeavor to further strengthen the capacity of officers of the Liberia National Police (LNP) and the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL) to prevent and effectively respond to threats of terrorism when necessary. As an adherent and contributor to global initiatives that promote peace and security, Ambassador Kemayah reaffirmed Liberia’s support as a State Party to the Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT); the UN Program of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons, the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) and other international instruments.
The Liberian Diplomat at the United Nations revealed that the Government through the Liberia National Commission on Small Arms (LiNCSA) was working to ensure the full domestication of the ATT, and called for international support to consolidate the gains. “ …as we endeavor to domesticate the Arms Trade Treaty, we must be quick to flag that there are a number of challenges; one of which has to do with funding. Hence, we will appreciate support from the International Community for programs for the Liberian Commission on Small Arms as a way of consolidating the strides made by the Government of Liberia in the realization of the objectives of the Arms Trade Treaty.” Ambassador Kemayah also used the medium to express the gratitude of President George Weah to the United Nations for its immeasurable contributions to the Country’s recovery and development.
The UN First Committee opened for its main session for the 73rd Session of the General Assembly early October and is discussing global security issues on a number of thematic clusters including conventional weapons, nuclear weapons, chemical weapons, and the prevention of an arms race in outer space.