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Last Updated: 12 August 2014

Cluster Munition Ban Policy

Commitment to the Convention on Cluster Munitions

Convention on Cluster Munitions status

State Party

National implementation measures

Undertaking a review of existing legislation

Stockpile Destruction

Declared a stockpile that it is preparing to destroy

Participation in Convention on Cluster Munitions meetings

Attended Fourth Meeting of States Parties in Lusaka in September 2013, intersessional meetings in Geneva in April 2014, and a regional meeting in Lomé, in May 2013

Key developments

Condemned the use of cluster munitions


The Republic of Mozambique signed the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 3 December 2008, ratified on 14 March 2011, and the convention entered into force for the country on 1 September 2011.

Under national implementation measures, Mozambique has reported that it is undertaking a review of legislation to ensure compliance with obligations under Article 9 of the Convention on Cluster Munitions.[1] This legislative review was believed to be continuing as of June 2014.[2]

Mozambique provided an initial Article 7 transparency report for the Convention on Cluster Munitions in June 2012 and an annual updated report in 2013.[3]

Mozambique was one of three African states to participate in the launch of the Oslo Process in February 2007, which produced the Convention on Cluster Munitions. It participated actively throughout the Oslo Process and was a strong advocate for a comprehensive ban without exceptions, as well as for victim assistance and international cooperation and assistance.[4]

Mozambique has continued to actively engage in the work of the Convention on Cluster Munitions since 2008. It has attended every Meeting of States Parties of the convention, including the Fourth Meeting of State Parties in Lusaka, Zambia in September 2013. Mozambique has participated in all of the convention’s intersessional meetings in Geneva, including those held in April 2014. It has participated in regional conferences on cluster munitions, including in Lomé, Togo in May 2013.

In September 2013, Mozambique told States Parties that the Convention on Cluster Munitions “brings such a moral weight that the number of belligerents that still insist in using cluster munitions is decreasing” but said “we sincerely regret the continued use of cluster munitions despite their international condemnation,” a clear reference to the ongoing use of the weapon by Syria.[5]

Mozambique is a State Party to the Mine Ban Treaty and hosted the treaty’s Third Review Conference in Maputo in June 2014. It is not party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons.

Mozambique has not yet provided its views on certain important issues related to interpretation and implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions, 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.

Use, production, and transfer

Mozambique has declared that it “never produced” cluster munitions and “therefore has no need to convert or decommission such facilities.”[6]

It is not known who used cluster munitions in Mozambique in the past. Mozambique has reported that cluster munition remnants, including submunitions from RBK-250 and CB-470 air-dropped bombs, have been found in the provinces of Tete, Manica, Gaza, and Maputo.[7] In 2011, Mozambique requested that State Parties “provide any technical data on previous cluster munitions strikes within the territory of Mozambique that may be available in their military archives.”[8]

Stockpiling and destruction

Mozambique has declared a stockpile of 290 cluster munitions and 22,656 submunitions that it was preparing to destroy, as of June 2014.[9] The stockpile is comprised of 97 RBK-250-275 bombs, each containing 150 AO-1SCh submunitions (14,550 in total) and 193 RBK-250 bombs, each containing 42 PTAB-2.5 submunitions (8,106 in total).[10] The stocks were identified during a Ministry of Defence inventory review and have been separated from other munitions maintained for operational use.[11]

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

Mozambique is developing a stockpile destruction plan and has requested technical assistance and financial support to complete the destruction process. In April 2014, it stated that stockpile destruction has been “prioritized” and the next step of the process is “to trial and finalize the operational procedures for the dismantling and destruction” of the stockpile. Mozambique expressed its hope that “with the support of our international partners, the destruction programme could be fully implemented in 2014 or 2015.”[12]

Mozambique has provided regular updates on its progress towards preparing a stockpile destruction plan. In June 2013, Norwegian People’s Aid conducted a verification and feasibility assessment mission to look at destruction of the stockpiled cluster munitions, which it inspected at the Mozambican Defence Force arms depot in Nacala together with representatives from the National Demining Institute and UNDP.[13] Mozambique has declared that it is not retaining any cluster munitions for training or research purposes as permitted by Article 3 of the Convention on Cluster Munitions.[14]


[2] Ibid., 14 June 2013.

[3] As of 28 June 2014, it had yet to provide the annual update report due by 30 April 2014. Various time periods are covered by the reports submitted in June 2012 (1 September 2011 to 31 May 2012) and 17 June 2013 (calendar year 2012).

[4] For details on Mozambique’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. 122–123.

[5] Statement of Mozambique, Convention on Cluster Munitions Fourth Meeting of States Parties, Lusaka, 10 September 2013.

[6] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form E, June 2012; and interview with Isabel Massango, Head of Department of National Demining Institute, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Geneva, 27 June 2011.

[8] Statement of Mozambique, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Meeting of States Parties, Beirut, 15 September 2011.

[9] Mozambique also possesses 83 RBK-250 ZAB-2.5 bombs containing incendiary submunitions that it intends to destroy in conjunction with its stockpile of cluster munitions. Statement of Mozambique, Convention on Cluster Munitions Intersessional Meeting, Geneva, 8 April 2014; and interview with UNDP technical staff and a specialist consultant retained to assess the condition of the stockpile and develop disposal procedures, Maputo, 26 June 2014.

[10] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, June 2012. The same cluster munitions were reported stockpiled in the 2013 report. Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, 14 June 2013.

[11] Ibid. The request for technical and financial assistance is also made under the Form B – Part II, section 6 on “Challenges and international assistance and cooperation needed for the implementation of Article 3.”

[12] Statement of Mozambique, Convention on Cluster Munitions Intersessional Meetings, Geneva, 8 April 2014.

[13] Ibid.