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SALW: laws and definition

MiCT The Niles
The laws regulating the private possession of guns in Sudan and South Sudan as well as a definition of ‘Small Arms and Light Weapons’ at a glance.
25.11.2014  |  Berlin, Germany


Private possession of guns

The right to private gun ownership in Sudan and South Sudan* is not guaranteed by law. Only licensed owners may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition.

Carrying guns:
Carrying a concealed firearm in a public place is allowed, subject to a valid permit.

Minimum Age:
30 years (for a firearm) / 25 years  for an air weapon.

Limit of number of guns:
Two firearms per authorisation and a limited quantity of ammunition.

Requirements for license:

  • prove genuine reason to possess a firearm (hunting, target shooting, collection, security);
  • pass a background check (considers criminal and mental records);
  • pass a test in a theoretical and /or practical training course to prove his understanding
       of firearm safety and the law;
  • re-apply and re-qualify for their firearm licence every year.

The penalty for the possession, use or carrying of an arm without licence is imprisonment, for a term not less than two years, and a fine. Or death, or imprisonment, for a term not less than ten years, in such areas, as the President of the Republic, by an order thereof, may specify.

* In the Republic of South Sudan, a law that defines the mechanisms of, conditions or penalties for the possession of arms has not been formulated and adopted yet. According to legal experts, however, the law of the Republic of the Sudan is valid until a new national law has been passed.



Small arms” are, broadly speaking, weapons designed for individual use. They include, among others, revolvers and self-loading pistols, rifles and carbines, as well as automatic sub-machine guns, assault rifles and light machine guns;

Light weapons” are, broadly speaking, weapons designed for use by two or three persons serving as a crew, although some may be carried and used by a single person. They include, among others, general purpose or universal machine guns, medium machine guns, heavy machine guns, rifle grenades, under-barrel grenade launchers and mounted grenade launchers, portable anti-aircraft guns, portable anti-tank guns, recoilless rifles, man portable launchers of anti-tank missile and rocket systems, man portable launchers of anti-aircraft missile systems, and mortars of a calibre of less than 100 millimetres.

Source: UN: International Instrument to Enable States to Identify and  Trace, in a Timely and Reliable Manner, Illicit Small Arms and Light Weapons; II, 4.

This article is part of:
Small Arms: If the evil is coming shut the door
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