Last Updated: 12 August 2014

Cluster Munition Ban Policy

Commitment to the Convention on Cluster Munitions

Convention on Cluster Munitions status

State Party

Stockpile destruction

In process

National implementation legislation

Draft legislation is being prepared

Participation in Convention on Cluster Munitions meetings

None in 2013 or the first half of 2014

Key developments

Declared a stockpile of 510 cluster munitions in 2012 that it has committed to destroy by the end of 2015


The Republic of Botswana signed the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 3 December 2008, ratified on 27 June 2011, and the convention entered into force for the country on 1 December 2011.

Under national implementation measures Botswana reported in April 2014 “[d]omestication of the Convention through an Act of Parliament” while previously, in 2012, it reported that “consultations [are] underway to domesticate the convention through an Act of parliament.”[1]

Botswana submitted its initial Article 7 transparency report for the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 31 August 2012 and provided an annual updated Article 7 report in April 2014.[2]

Botswana participated in the Oslo Process that created the Convention on Cluster Munitions and sought a comprehensive and immediate ban during the formal negotiations in Dublin in May 2008.[3] Botswana participated in the convention’s First Meeting of States Parties in Vientiane, in November 2010, but it did not attend subsequent meetings held in 2011, 2012, or 2013. It has never attended the convention’s intersessional meetings in Geneva.

Botswana attended a regional conference on the convention in Accra, Ghana in May 2012, but did not participate in a follow-up conference held in Lomé, Togo in May 2013.

Botswana voted in favor of UN General Assembly (UNGA) Resolution 68/182 on 18 December 2013 condemning the Syrian government’s use of cluster munitions.[4]

Botswana has not yet provided its views on certain important issues related to interpretation and implementation of the convention, including the prohibition on transit, the prohibition on assistance during joint military operations with states not party that may use cluster munitions, the prohibition on foreign stockpiling of cluster munitions, the prohibition on investment in production of cluster munitions, and the need for retention of cluster munitions and submunitions for training and development purposes.

Botswana is a State Party to the Mine Ban Treaty. Botswana is not party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons.

Use, production, transfer, and stockpiling

Botswana declared in August 2012 that it has “never produced cluster munitions” and has no production facilities.[5] According to the report, “Botswana has never fired any of the cluster munitions.”[6] In 2010, Botswana stated that it has never transferred cluster munitions.[7]

In the initial Article 7 report provided in August 2012, Botswana declared the possession of 510 cluster munitions of two types containing a total of 12,900 submunitions: 500 120mm mortar rounds (each containing 21 submunitions, totaling 10,500) and 10 CBU-250K air-dropped bombs (each containing 240 submunitions, totaling 2,400).[8]

Under Article 3 of the Convention on Cluster Munitions, Botswana is required to destroy all its stockpiled cluster munitions as soon as possible, but not later than 1 December 2019.

In its initial Article 7 report, Botswana stated that it intends to destroy its stockpiled cluster munitions at a location near Shoshong village in the Taukgolo Ranges.[9] In the Article 7 report provided in April 2014, Botswana committed to destroying the stockpile by the end of 2015.[10]

Botswana has not indicated if it will retain any cluster munitions for research and training purposes.


[1] As of June 2014, it was not clear if the “Act of Parliament’ is national legislation specifically intended to enforce the convention’s provisions. Convention on Cluster Munitions, Form A, 30 April 2014.$file/2014Botswana.pdf; Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form A, 31 August 2012.

[2] The initial report covers the period to 29 May 2012, while the updated report dated 30 April 2014 is for the period from 29 May 2013 to 29 May 2014.

[3] For details on Botswana’s policy and practice regarding cluster munitions through early 2009, see Human Rights Watch and Landmine Action, Banning Cluster Munitions: Government Policy and Practice (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada, May 2009), pp. 45–46.

[4]Situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic,” UNGA Resolution A/RES/68/182, 18 December 2013. Botswana voted in support of a similar resolution on 15 May 2013.

[5] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Forms D and E, 31 August 2012.

[6] Ibid., Form F.

[7] Statement by O. Rhee Hetanang, Permanent Mission of Botswana to the UN in Geneva, International Conference on the Convention on Cluster Munitions, in Santiago, 7 June 2010.

[9] Ibid., Form B.