The Border Service of the State Committee for National Security of the Kyrgyz Republic
The project aims to reduce the risk of illicit SALW, CA and explosive proliferation across the Kyrgyz Republic border.
The project activities are in line with the POiB’s mandate and fall under the OSCE PC decision No. 1250 Article 3 (a) “Projects related to the politico-military dimension, with a focus on transnational threats and law enforcement co-operation, with an emphasis on security sector governance, the fight against terrorism and violent extremism, and the fight against organized crime and drug trafficking”. The proposed ExB project is linked to the OSCE POiB politico-military dimension’s objective, which aims “to assist the host state in efforts to prevent radicalization, combat terrorism, violent extremism, chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) threats, and threats to critical infrastructure, and to enhance capabilities in the areas of border security and arms control”.
This includes its related outcomes, which state: “relevant state agencies effectively operate in the field of arms control, prevention of CBRN threats and non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction” and “the effectiveness and efficiency of the host state to address transnational threats and to ensure border security and co-operation at the national and regional levels are increased”.
The derived outputs, for example, are: “capacities of the AFs in areas of Small Arms and Light Weapons and Stockpiles of Conventional Ammunition (SALW and SCA) and OSCE confidence and security building measures (CSBMs) are increased”, “capacities of the host State to prevent and respond to transnational threats in the field of border security and management is increased” and “border co-operation and interaction among local law enforcement agencies and regional border services in effectively preventing transnational threats and combating cross-border crime are strengthened “.
The project aims to contribute to comprehensive security, by mainstreaming the gender perspective and complying with the MC.DEC/14/04 2004 OSCE Action Plan for the Promotion of Gender Equality. According to the gender marker score, the project is partly gender mainstreamed, because residents near storage sites – women, men, and children – will equally benefit from project activities. Nevertheless, the gender aspect will be considered when forming Project Implementation Team (PIT), hiring consultants, and organizing events in order to provide equal opportunities to women and men. Additionally, Project Officer will consult with the Gender Adviser to ensure gender issues are fully considered during project implementation in accordance with UN SCR 1325, MC.DEC 14/04 “OSCE Action Plan for the Promotion of Gender Equality” and "Gender and the environment - a guide to the integration of gender aspects in the OSCE's environmental projects".
The project will contribute to Sustainable Development Goal 16 by promoting peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels. Specifically, it will support target 16.a by strengthening relevant national institutions, including through international cooperation, for building capacities at all levels, in particular in developing countries, for preventing violence and combating terrorism and crime and 16.4 by reducing illicit arms flows and strengthening the recovery and return of assets and combating all forms of organized crime
The project will implement the following activities:
Activity 1.1 Supporting strategic approach and updating regulations for EOD service of the Border Service;
Activity 1.2 Supporting EOD operational and material capabilities of the Border Service Units located in the
South of the Kyrgyz Republic;
Activity 1.3 Supporting EOD co-ordination capabilities and interoperability of the Border Service;
Activity 1.4 Supporting EOD training capabilities at the Border Service Professional Training Centre in Osh;
Activity 1.5 Supporting medical service of the Border Service in support of EOD operations;
Activity 2.1 Supporting strategic approach and updating regulations for PSSM of SALW, CA and engineering
equipment of the Border Service;
Activity 2.2 Upgrading infrastructure capacity for SALW, CA and engineering equipment storages of the Border
Activity 2.3 Improving SALW, CA and engineering equipment information management capabilities of the
Activity 2.4 Developing PSSM training capabilities at the Border Service Professional Training Centre in Osh;
Activity 3.1 Supporting strategic approach and updating regulations for K9 service of the Border Service;
Activity 3.2 Supporting infrastructure and technical equipment improvements of the K9 Training Centre in Osh;
Activity 3.3 Enhancing K9 service training capabilities at the Border Service Training Centre in Osh;
Activity 3.4 Enhancing K9 service information management and co-ordination capabilities and interoperability;
Activity 3.5 Supporting K9 service operational capacities;
Activity 4.1 Supporting strategic approach and updating regulations of the Border Service on combatting illicit
trafficking of SALW, CA and explosives;
Activity 4.2 Developing training capabilities at the Border Service Professional Training Centre in Osh in
combatting illicit trafficking of SALW, CA and explosives;
Activity 4.3 Supporting interoperability of the Border Service in combatting illicit trafficking of SALW, CA and
Activity 4.4 Developing technical capabilities of border crossing points in Batken and Osh regions in combatting
the illicit trafficking of SALW, CA and explosives.
The risks to a project initially were identified in the course of the situation, stakeholder and problem analysis. The impact of risks and the management responses designed to control these were assessed and the Risk management plan was designed to address a range of identified risks. The risk management plan will be reviewed, discussed and updated continuously across the entire life cycle of the project.
Against the safety and security of infrastructure upgrades, the project will introduce very strict control and the highest safety instructions. These operational control measures will be regularly implemented and monitored. Against legal risks, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed. MoU will protect the OSCE from liabilities once a third-party contractor begins construction work.
After the collapse of Afghanistan’s central government in August 2021 and subsequent developments, there is a significant increase in risks of illicit trafficking and uncontrolled spread of SALW and CA in/to/from Central Asia that, combined with other transnational threats, could undermine safety, security and stability of Kyrgyzstan, other Central Asian pS and beyond. The closest aerial distance between Afghanistan and the Kyrgyz Republic (via Tajikistan) is about 110 kilometres.
Over 600,000 various types of SALW (number assessed since 2003) in Afghanistan are unaccounted for. This risk is coupled with the proliferation of expertise and supplementary equipment and technologies such as in the field of Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) and drones. In relation to the first, it should be noted that Afghanistan has harboured in recent years between 8,000 and 10,000 foreign terrorist fighters, including from Central Asian pS, as well as several transnational terrorist groups, such as al-Qaeda and the Islamic State Khorasan Province. Moreover, the socio-economic instability in Afghanistan, e.g. food shortages and famine, provides additional incentives for the population to sell SALW in the country and abroad.
The Kyrgyz Republic lies on the northern trafficking route that connects Afghanistan through Central Asia with the Russian Federation and further the European Union. Afghanistan is currently the world's biggest opiate supplier (85-90%). Thus, the global trade in illicit Afghan opiates has become one of the world's greatest transnational drug and crime threats. Illicit SALW is an enabling element in these threats, while SALW, CA and explosives trafficking complements other criminal activities. Therefore, there is a potential to rely on the same networks of connections to sell and traffic different types of illicit SALW, CA and explosives across borders to the Kyrgyz Republic, Central Asia and beyond.
Additionally, degraded SALW and CA physical infrastructure and poor stockpile management and security practices in the Kyrgyz Republic (and in wider Central Asia) further increase security and safety risks due to potential pilferage, sabotage and unplanned explosions.
The Border Service is one of the law enforcement agencies mandated to combat the illicit trafficking of SALW, CA and explosives. It is vested with the responsibility to ensure the inviolability of state borders and the protection of the sovereign rights of the Kyrgyz Republic within its exclusive economic zone.
The main functions that the Border Service fulfils – also in support of combating illicit trafficking of SALW, CA and explosives – are the protection of borders, the conduct of intelligence, information and analytical and operation investigative activities, participation in the fight against organized crime, counteraction illegal migration and participation in activities aimed at combating terrorism and organized crime. These functions are mutually reinforcing. The ability of any border security and management agency – including the Border Service - to fulfil these functions, determines the effectiveness of the border security and management regime.
These functions are mutually reinforcing. The ability of any border security and management agency – including the Border Service - to fulfil these functions, determines the effectiveness of the border security and management regime. Consequently, it contributes to the safety and security of the entire nation.
Addressing the above-identified risks in the Kyrgyz Republic would require enhancing the Border Service’s capacities in (a) combatting illicit trafficking of SALW and CA through a risk management approach and by utilizing different assets and (b) upgrading SALW and CA stockpile management and security. In order to strengthen these capacities in a comprehensive and sustainable way, utilizing the capability enabling lines model is to be applied.
The Kyrgyz Republic requested practical assistance in the field of SALW and SCA on behalf of the Border Service and the Ministry of Defence at the 988th meeting of the OSCE Forum for Security Co-operation (FSC) on 13 October 2021 (FSC.DEL/375/21).
In the assistance request, the Border Service identified the following security and safety risks:
Subject matter areas where assistance has been requested are:
In response to the Border Service assistance request, the OSCE executed two expert assessment visits to Kyrgyz Republic with the aim to:
The initial OSCE expert visit was organized in the period of 12 – 17 December 2021, while the second expert in the period of 24 – 29 April 2022.
The needs assessment visits identified the problem statements as follows:
The OSCE identified shortfalls, needs and recommendations in all four areas. The expert assessment visit reports provided conclusions and the outline of the proposed OSCE comprehensive programmatic intervention in support of the Border Service to reduce risk of illicit SALW, CA and explosive proliferation in and across the border of Kyrgyzstan.
The OSCE accepted normative documents in the field of SALW/SCA, including best practices guidelines, and in the field of border security and management, support efforts in combating illicit trafficking of SALW, CA and explosives in all its aspects.