Russian authorities to fight illegal arms trade

Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs has aimed at battling the illegal arms trade as over 400 thousand illegal weapons have been confiscated by its officers during 2006.

Deputy head of the Ministry's Criminal Investigation Department General Savin stressed that the ministry is concerned with securing arms factories in order to prevent theft, which accounts for a significant portion of the market.

“Theft from factories that produce ready-made weapons and modification of pneumatic and other types of weapons remain some of the main ways of arms entering the black market,” he mentioned.

“What really concerns us is the fact that a third of the stolen and illegally sold weapons comes from military institutions – and topping that list is the Defense Ministry. There is also a tendency for moving arms from conflict zones into other Russian regions. Another point of concern is the problem of the so-called 'black diggers' – people who recover historic weapons at large battle sites with intent to sell,” General Savin added.