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Table of Contents
Country Reports
Africa, Landmine Monitor Report 2000
LM Report 2000 Full Report   Executive Summary   Key Findings   Key Developments   Translated Country Reports

Sub-Saharan Africa Map




Mine Ban Policy

Of the forty-eight countries in sub-Saharan Africa, twenty-seven are States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty, and another fourteen are signatories. Seven countries in the region remain outside the Mine Ban Treaty: Central African Republic, Comoros, Congo (Brazzaville), Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Nigeria, and Somalia.

On 21 July 2000 Mauritania became the 100th country to ratify the Mine Ban Treaty. Seven of the last eight nations to ratify have been from Africa. In this Landmine Monitor reporting period (since March 1999), nine additional African countries have become States Parties. In chronological order they are: Niger, Chad, Madagascar, Liberia (which acceded), Botswana, Togo, Seychelles, Rwanda, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, and Mauritania.

While several African nations indicate that the Mine Ban Treaty has been incorporated into domestic law, not a single nation has enacted full implementation legislation. South Africa reported that it is in the process of doing so.

Compliance with the requirement to submit an Article 7 transparency measures report within 180 days of entry into force of the treaty has not been good in Africa. Bénin , Mozambique, Senegal, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe have submitted their initial Article 7 reports, with only Senegal and South Africa doing so in a timely fashion. Burkina Faso, Chad, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea, Lesotho, Malawi, Mali, Mauritius, Namibia, Niger, and Uganda have not yet submitted their reports, some of which were due in August 1999.

Mozambique introduced UN General Assembly Resolution 54/54B in support of the Mine Ban Treaty, which was adopted in December 1999. No country from the Africa region voted against or abstained in this vote. Mozambique also hosted the First Meeting of States Parties in May 1999. Twenty-nine of the 108 governments participating were from Africa.

South Africa served as co-chair, and Zimbabwe served as co-rapporteur, of the Intersessional Standing Committee of Experts on the General Status and Operation of the Convention. Mozambique co-chaired the SCE on Mine Clearance. Mali agreed to co-chair the SCE on Stockpile Destruction, but did not attend the two SCE meetings. In general, participation in the intersessional meetings by African states was limited. Other African governments that attended at least one SCE meeting were Angola, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan, Swaziland, and Zambia.


Since March 1999, antipersonnel mines have been used in more conflicts in Africa (eight) than in any other region. Landmine Monitor is especially concerned about the acknowledged use of AP mines by treaty signatory Angola, the likely use of AP mines by treaty signatories Burundi and Sudan, allegations of use by signatory Ethiopia, and ongoing allegations of use in the DR Congo by armed forces of States Parties Rwanda, Uganda, Zimbabwe, and Chad.

Both government troops and UNITA rebel forces have continued to use antipersonnel mines in Angola and in parts of neighboring Namibia. A number of AP landmines appear to have been planted inside Zambia in 1999 and 2000 by Angolan government and UNITA rebel forces.

Based on information provided by the UNHCR and others, it appears likely that Burundi has been laying antipersonnel mines on its border with Tanzania. Both the government of Sudan and the opposition Sudan People’s Liberation Army are believed to have used antipersonnel mines in this reporting period. The government of Sudan denies use of AP mines.

It is clear that antipersonnel mines were still being used in the DRC in 1999 and 2000, but it remains impossible to verify who is responsible for laying the mines. There have been accusations that not only are government troops and opposition RCD forces using mines, but also troops from States Parties Rwanda, Uganda, Zimbabwe, and Chad. Virtually all sides have denied using mines.

In the 1998-2000 border war between Ethiopia and Eritrea, it appears that tens of thousands of new mines were laid. Each government has alleged that the other laid mines, and observers have expressed concern that both sides may have used mines. While Landmine Monitor cannot verify use by Eritrea, there are serious, independent reports of use of antipersonnel mines by Eritrean forces.

There is evidence of use of antipersonnel mines in 1999 and 2000 by Lord’s Resistance Army rebels entering Uganda from Sudan. Various factions in Somalia continued to use AP mines. It appears that MFDC rebels in the Casamance province of Senegal laid new mines in this period. Senegal denied use of antipersonnel mines by its troops in Guinea-Bissau in 1998, as reported in Landmine Monitor Report 1999. The UN indicated in July 1999 that Guinea-Bissau also denied using landmines in its 1998 conflict, as reported by Landmine Monitor. Landmine Monitor stands by its conclusions.

Production and Transfer

It is believed that there are no antipersonnel landmine producers in Africa south of the Sahara. Former producers, South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Uganda have since become States Parties to the Mine Treaty. In November 1999, a U.S. government report stated that Sudan manufactures landmines, but Landmine Monitor has not been able to confirm this report. The use of antipersonnel mines in several conflicts in the region has raised concerns about illicit cross-border transfers of antipersonnel mines, but Landmine Monitor has not been able to document specific cases.

Stockpiling and Destruction

Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 reporting and repeated inquiries from Landmine Monitor researchers have begun to shed some light on antipersonnel mine stockpiles in the region, but details for most countries remain elusive.

South Africa and Namibia had previously reported completion of destruction of their AP mine stockpiles, except mines retained for training as permitted under the Mine Ban Treaty. Mali announced at the First Meeting of States Parties that it had completed destruction. Some stockpiled AP mines have been destroyed in Guinea-Bissau, Liberia and Uganda. In November 1999 the French military stationed in Djibouti destroyed its stockpile of 2,444 antipersonnel landmines.

States Parties that have not yet begun the destruction process include Chad, Djibouti, Madagascar, Mauritania, Mozambique, Niger, Rwanda, and Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe has developed a plan for destruction. It is still unclear if State Party Guinea or signatory Tanzania have stockpiles of AP mines; they are among only a handful of countries globally that have not revealed that basic information.

In addition to those States Parties, those believed to have stockpiles of AP mines include Mine Ban Treaty non-signatories Central African Republic, Congo (Brazzaville), DR Congo, Eritrea, Nigeria and Somalia; and treaty signatories Angola, Burundi, Ethiopia, Gabon, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Sierra Leone, and Sudan.

Other new information reported in Landmine Monitor Report 2000 includes: Comoros, Senegal, Lesotho and Malawi have stated that they do not have any AP mines in stockpile. Botswana, Togo, Zambia, and Burundi have stated that they have only small stockpiles of AP mines for training; in the case of Burundi credible allegations of use belie that statement.

Mine Action Funding

In 1999, a total of about $40 million was provided to twelve countries, plus Somaliland, for demining and mine awareness activities in 1999. These were Angola ($12.6 million), Mozambique ($12.4 million), Somaliland ($4.9 million), Chad, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Mauritania, Swaziland, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Guinea Bissau, Sudan, and Uganda. It appears funding will increase in 2000, with Djibouti, Eritrea, and Zambia also receiving mine action funds; funding for Mozambique is expected to rise to $16.2 million, and in Angola to $17.4 million. Mine action funding increased significantly in Somaliland in 1999 and 2000.

Mine action in the region is primarily funded by the European Commission, Australia, Austria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States.

Landmine Problem

In the region, twenty-six countries, plus Somaliland, are mine-affected. These countries include: Angola, Burundi, Chad, Congo Brazzaville, Djibouti, DR Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritania, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

One of the major problems in assessing the mine problem in most of the countries of the region is the lack of nationwide surveys. Compounding this problem are natural disasters such as the flooding in Mozambique and renewed armed conflict in places like Angola and the Ethiopia-Eritrea border. Level One Impact Surveys are underway in Mozambique and Chad, and planned for Angola, Eritrea, Ethiopia, and Somaliland. In 1999 and 2000, UNMAS has conducted assessment missions in Namibia, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Mine Clearance

Mine clearance is taking place in sixteen countries or areas, including Angola, Chad, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Somaliland, Sudan, and Zimbabwe, with smaller-scale activities in Djibouti, Mauritania, Uganda, and Zambia.

About five square kilometers of land were cleared in Mozambique in 1999, bringing the overall total to 194 square kilometers. As of May 2000, a total of some 10 square kilometers of land and 5,000 kilometers of road have been cleared in Angola and 15,000 mines destroyed. From 1995 to February 2000, 16,983 mines and UXO were cleared in Rwanda, and about 5,000 hectares of land. The Ethiopian Demining Project has cleared 37,000 mines and 364,000 pieces of UXO. In Zimbabwe, major mine clearance operations started in March 1999; by mid-July 2000 a total of 3.8 square kilometers of land had been cleared. The U.S. completed its “train the trainers” programs in Namibia and Rwanda in February 2000. The U.S.-funded mine clearance program in Eritrea was suspended in mid-1998 due to renewed fighting, but is expected to resume in 2000.

Mine Awareness

There are currently mine awareness programs of varying size and effectiveness in Angola, Botswana, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Mozambique, Rwanda, Senegal, Swaziland, Sudan, and Uganda. Among the countries where no mine awareness programs were identified, but are needed, are Burundi, Chad, DR Congo, Mauritania, Somalia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Mine Casualties

In this reporting period, mine casualties occurred in twenty-two countries in the region, as well as Somaliland. In Angola, 1,004 casualties were officially recorded from mid-1998 to 2000; in Chad, 127 mine and UXO-related casualties were reported from September 1998 to October 1999; in Djibouti, 69 casualties were recorded between 1999 and early 2000; in Eritrea, 504 casualties were reported between 1994 and mid-1999; in Ethiopia, 100 deaths were reported from 1998 to1999; in Mozambique, 60 casualties were recorded in 1999; in Namibia, 89 casualties were reported in one region between December 1999 to mid-May 2000; in Senegal, 59 mine casualties were registered in 1999; and in Sudan, 51 casualities were found in Chukudum (1999 to May 2000).

In 1999 the authorities in Somaliland for the first time tried to systematically collect data on mine victims, and they estimate that there have been more than 3,500 mine casualties since 1988.

Based on Landmine Monitor research, it would appear that casualty rates increased in 1999-2000 in a number of countries, due to a new or expanded conflict: Angola, Burundi, DR Congo, Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Namibia. The number of mine victims in Angola was up sharply in 1999; in Luena alone the number of mine casualties rose from 103 in 1998 to 185 in 1999.

However, in a number of other countries, it appears that the casualty rate is declining, in some cases quite substantially, including Rwanda, Mozambique, Senegal, and Uganda. In Mozambique, despite fears that the Limpopo floods would result in an increase in mine casualties, the number of mine casualties continued to decline, falling from 133 casualties in 1998 to 60 casualties in 1999. In Senegal, 59 mine casualties were registered in 1999, down from 195 in 1998. In Uganda, in Kasese district, where ADF rebels are most active, casualties declined from 17 in 1997, to 28 in 1998, to only one in 1999. In 1999 and 2000, there were only twelve mine casualties registered in Rwanda.

Survivor Assistance

Only South Africa, Uganda, and Mozambique have national disability laws. In Kenya, Rwanda and Senegal new laws are being developed. About half of the countries in Africa do not have any laws or specific policies regarding disabled people.

Only Djibouti and Eritrea reported having emergency medical treatment (first aid services) for mine victims. While African states provided medical care in the biggest cities, in rural areas, medical services often lacked personnel, equipment, and medicines. In places like Angola, Burundi, Niger, Senegal, and Uganda, military health services have better equipment and sometimes care for civilians as well. In about half the affected countries, hospital care is the patient's financial responsibility.

Each of the affected countries has rehabilitation services for landmine victims with the exception of Somalia for which no information is available. However, these services are scarce and almost impossible to reach for most victims, especially in Angola, Djibouti, Eritrea, Sierra Leone, and Senegal (Casamance). Prostheses are provided free of charge in Burundi, Eritrea, and Mozambique, and at a subsidized cost in Kenya, Rwanda, and Uganda. Many NGOs and private groups provide prostheses free of charge. Community Based Rehabilitation programs exist in Mozambique, Uganda, and Zimbabwe.

Socio-economic reintegration activities for landmine victims were reported in twelve countries: Angola, Burundi, Eritrea, Kenya, Mauritania, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Senegal, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zimbabwe. Reintegration activities seem to be geographically accessible only in Kenya and Namibia.