An analysis is provided in this policy brief, regarding the implementation of arms embargoes in Côte d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Sierra Leone and Somalia. These countries were selected for analysis based on their particular characteristics and experience in relation to arms embargoes. Arms embargoes, if well implemented, are one of the most effective ways of controlling the proliferation of weaponry. Although Africa is the main recipient of UN-imposed arms embargoes, the continent still faces a number of challenges in enforcing such regimes. These include the misperception that sanctions are punitive, the disconnect between the UN sanctions-monitoring committees and governments in target states, weak coordination between law-enforcement agencies at the national and regional levels, and the porosity of international borders. This policy brief underscores the importance of African states implementing arms embargoes and provides the African Union with possible policies to propose to member states with regard to enhancing the effectiveness of sanctions.