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Country Reports
MAURITIUS, Landmine Monitor Report 1999


Mauritius was the first African country to sign and ratify the Mine Ban Treaty, when its Secretary General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Deputy Prime Minister, Mohamed Ould Maawiya, signed and at the same time deposited the instrument of ratification on 3 December 1997 in Ottawa, Canada. Mauritius, Ireland and Canada all signed and ratified in this same manner. Mauritius participated in the Oslo treaty negotiations and also supported the key 1996 and 1997 UN General Assembly resolutions on landmines.

Mauritius has never been a producer, exporter, or user of antipersonnel landmines. The Minister of Foreign Affairs has acknowledged that there is a very small stock of approximately a dozen landmines retained for training purposes under Article 3 of the ban treaty.[1] A Foreign Affairs spokesperson reported that they were in the custody of the Mauritius Police Force.

While Mauritius has not enacted specific domestic legislation implementing the Mine Ban Treaty, the Minister of Foreign Affairs has announced that "there will soon be legislation to include anti-personnel landmines in the definition of explosives in the Explosives Act." A spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs indicated that no amendment is needed because the definition already tacitly includes landmines.[2]

Mauritian non-governmental organizations have been campaigning in support of the ban since February 1996 when one of its members attended the Fourth International NGO Conference on Landmines in Maputo, Mozambique. A small group of people formed the Ban Landmines Group (Mauritius) and developed an action plan to lobby the government to sign and ratify the ban treaty.[3] Ban Landmines Group (Mauritius) started a signature campaign to support the Ottawa Process, collecting over 1,600 signatures in schools which were then remitted to the Prime Minister, through the Minister of Foreign Affairs and drew public attention through the media articles.[4]


[1]'Landmines in Mauritius, “As Dead as the Dodo?”, Interview with Rajikeswur Purryag, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs,' African Topics, issue 22, January-March 1998.

[2]Ban Landmines Group meeting with official, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Port Louis, 11 March 1999, in Report of Ban Landmines Group (Mauritius), prepared for presentation at the Southern African Regional Landmines Campaign Meeting, Johannesburg, South Africa, 15-16 March 1999.

[3]Meeting with Hon Paul Berenger, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Port Louis, 23 April 1997.

[4]L'Express, (Port Louis) and Le Mauricien, (Port Louis), 14 August 1997.