Module: Small Arms Trafficking

This module in the Horn of Africa project will examine how the trafficking of small arms perpetuates conflict in the region. Students will learn how political instability and prolonged conflict have encouraged the proliferation of small arms across the Horn over several decades. Small arms have been become readily accessible to a variety of actors, including rebel groups and criminal networks, while governments have been unable to effectively police their porous borders. Beyond being introduced to the general dynamics of small arms trafficking in the region and the various initiatives undertaken to address the problem, students will be presented with case studies that illustrate the mechanisms by which small arms might intensify conflict. One case study will focus on the role of small arms in increasing violence in the rural areas of Kenya where livestock raiding is common. Another case study will examine how small arms might escalate resource-related conflicts in Ethiopia. A related exercise will prompt students to prepare a similar case study in another Horn country using material made available through the module.