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Brokering Control


Russian Federation
: National Report on the Implementation of the ITI, 2010 and 2008 
: 06/05/2011
National Report
: Military Technical Cooperation Division, Department for Security and Disarmament Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs
: dvbr@mid.ru

National laws, regulations and administrative procedures:

The need to mark every small arm and light weapon is laid down in Federal Act No. 150 of 13 December 1996 on weapons, as amended by Federal Act No. 15 of 10 January 2003.



National Marking Practices:

Every small arm and light weapon (SALW) carries a marking which includes an identification mark of the manufacturer, an individual number for the weapon assigned according to the manufacturer’s system and the date of manufacture. The number is imprinted (no less than 0.2 millimetres deep) and, if removed mechanically, can be easily restored through forensic examination. In the same way, the hammer and trigger assembly, the piston, breach lock, stock, gas cylinder and safety catch are also marked with the last three digits of the product number. Where necessary, an electrographic marking is also placed on the minor weapon parts. The marking may not have a manufacturer’s identification mark if the type of weapon in question is manufactured by only one company. The marking of service and civilian weapons meets the requirements of the Permanent International Commission for the Proof of Small Arms established pursuant to the Brussels Convention for the reciprocal recognition of proof marks on small arms of 1 July 1969, to which the Russian Federation has been a party since November 1994. The marking of both rifled and smooth-bore service and civilian weapons contains information on the country of manufacture (“made in the Russian Federation”), the trademark of the manufacturer, the identification mark of the weapon model, the year of manufacture or the last two digits of the year of manufacture and the individual number of the weapon. In addition, on rifled weapons there is an indication of the type of cartridge used (“calibre and length of casing: 7.62 x 39 mm, 7.62 x 51 mm”, etc.), and on smooth-bore weapons there is an indication of the calibre of the cartridge used and the length of the barrel chamber, the nominal bore diameter, the size of a tapered muzzle or presence of an enlarged bore and the permissible maximum pressure level of explosive gas. The Russian Institute of Precise Mechanical Engineering has now developed a firearms marking system in which the surface of the cartridge chamber is microscopically embossed with a symbol containing coded information on the registration number of the weapon. When the weapon is fired, this information is transmitted to the casing in the form of a trace impression, which allows the weapon to be identified from the discharged casing; this can even be done immediately at the scene of a crime. The manufacture of unmarked weapons in the Russian Federation is prohibited and is prosecuted in accordance with the procedure established by national legislation. In this connection, the trading in and storage of unmarked SALW in the territory of the Russian Federation is also prohibited. Such weapons are termed illegal and are destroyed or properly marked. An encrypted marking system for gas weapons was introduced at the Izhevsk Mechanical Plant in 2003 (as is well known, for experts it is not difficult to convert a gas weapon into a firearm). The methods and means used to apply the encrypted marking make it practically impossible to destroy the marks on the weapon.

Marking at the time of import:

In the Russian Federation, the Armed Forces and State paramilitary organizations use only domestically produced SALW, so that the problem of marking imported weapons of that type does not exist.

Marking of SALW in the possession of government armed and security forces:

The marking of military small arms and light weapons differs from the marking of civilian and service firearms. Every military small arm and light weapon bears a marking which includes: A manufacturer’s identification mark; An individual number for the weapon assigned according to the manufacturer’s system; The year of manufacture or a symbol containing the last two digits of the year. The number is stamped on the weapon (to a depth of no less than 0.2 millimetres) and can therefore be easily restored through forensic examination if removed by mechanical means. In the same way, the hammer and trigger assembly, frame, breech block, stock, gas cylinder and safety catch are also marked with the lasts three digits of the product number. The manufacturer’s identification mark may be omitted from the marking if the type of weapon in question is made by only one company. In the Russian Federation the Armed Forces and State paramilitary organizations use only domestically manufactured small arms and light weapons. As a result, the problem of marking imported small arms and light weapons does not arise.

Measures against the removal or alteration of markings:


Accurate and comprehensive records for all marked SALW within their territory:

In order to keep comprehensive and accurate records of SALW in the Russian Federation, manufacturing enterprises maintain centralized records and control. Each month, such weapons are counted individually. In addition, a commission appointed by the enterprise director conducts an annual check of the presence and storage conditions of small arms and light weapons. The registration and safe storage of finished products is regulated by the instructions on the procedure for receiving, registering and storing fin ished products and admitting persons to warehouses. Information on small arms and light weapons is retained at manufacturing enterprises for 10 years and in the organizations that use them for an indefinite period. Provision is made for the Armed Forces, internal affairs agencies, units of the interior ministry forces and State paramilitary organizations to keep special documentation recording each issuance of weapons and ammunition. SALW are recorded in a special register which ind icates their movement and presence in warehouses and in each unit. In addition, number-based records of SALW are kept for units (leaders). Records are kept of ammunition for small arms and light weapons on the basis of classification by type, calibre, bullet effect, factory number and year of manufacture. SALW assigned to leaders are registered on their service record sheets (identity cards) with an indication of the model, series, weapon number and issue date . The storage of unassigned weapons is categorically prohibited. The Ministry of Defence has completed all work on introducing number-based records and establishing an automated system of number -based records for small arms (AS No. “Zona -N”). In order to tighten control over record-keeping, storage and use, there are number-based records for 100 per cent of all man-portable air defence and anti-tank missile systems. In order to upgrade the record-keeping system for SALW, the Ministry of Defence has organized the prompt filing of documents concerning trade in small arms and light weapons, man -portable air defence systems and their components, anti-tank missile systems and their missiles, ammunition, explosive substances and explosive devices.


Measures taken for undertaking traces and responding to tracing requests

In the interests of the law enforcement agencies, the State paramilitary organizations of the Russian Federation and the law enforcement agencies of the members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), the Ministry of Internal Affairs is organizing and conducting centralized registration of missing (stolen or lost) and recovered (confiscated, found or voluntarily surrendered) firearms. This registration will be carried out with the help of the Oruzhie automated information-retrieval syste m. A database for lost and recovered SALW has been created and is updated daily. Enquiries concerning weapons verification are processed on a 24-hour basis. The Ministry of Defence and other State organizations that hold SALW inform the Ministry of Internal Affairs of instances of theft, loss and deterioration of such weapons. Information on lost weapons is collated annually with all State paramilitary organizations. The Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs registers control bullets and casings of service and civilian weapons for the purpose of tracing SALW, establishing facts about their use in the commission of crimes, determining the type, model and calibre of weapon used from bulle ts and casings found at the scene of the crime, and determining the particular weapon used and its owner.

Operational Informaton Exchange:

In 2008 checks were conducted through the INTERPOL Weapons Electronic Tracing System of the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) on 164 confiscated foreign-made firearms, 60 of which were physical evidence in criminal cases. Out of a total of 78 inquiries, the sales history of small arms and light weapons was established in 67 cases. From April 2008 to October 2009, the National Central Bureau of INTERPOL under the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs received 981 documents regarding illicit trade in foreign-made firearms, 419 of which were from the INTERPOL National Central Bureaux of foreign countries. During that period, 277 tracing communications were sent to the INTERPOL General Secretariat and 277 traced firearms were registered in the database of the INTERPOL General Secretariat.

Needs and Request for Assistance::

Implementation challenges and opportunities: