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Country Reports
TANZANIA , Landmine Monitor Report 2000
LM Report 2000 Full Report   Executive Summary   Key Findings   Key Developments   Translated Country Reports


Key developments since March 1999: On 17 July 2000 the National Assembly passed a bill to ratify the Mine Ban Treaty. Among the tens of thousands of refugees arriving in Tanzania are an increasing number of mine victims.

Mine Ban Policy

The United Republic of Tanzania signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 3 December 1997. On 17 July 2000 the National Assembly passed a bill to ratify the Mine Ban Treaty. The process and timetable for completing the ratification process and formally submitting the instrument of ratification to the UN is not known.

Tanzania participated in the First Meeting of States Parties in Maputo in May 1999 with a delegation led by the High Commissioner to Mozambique, H.E. Lt. Gen. Martin N. Mwakalindile. Tanzania did not attend any of the intersessional meetings of the Mine Ban Treaty. The country has, however, been active in sub-regional meetings on small arms and light weapons, which have included landmines in their deliberations.[1] In December 1999 Tanzania voted for UN General Assembly Resolution 54/54B in support of the Mine Ban Treaty. Tanzania is not a party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons, nor is it a member of the Conference on Disarmament. The Tanzania Campaign to Ban Landmines (TCBL) actively lobbies for swift ratification of the ban treaty, urges mine action assistance, and monitors treaty implementation.

Production, Transfer, Stockpiling and Use

Tanzania does not manufacture landmines and is not believed to transfer them. There are concerns about Tanzania being used as a transit point for arms shipments that could include landmines. Tanzania is one of just four signatories to the Mine Ban Treaty that have not publicly stated whether or not they have a stockpile of antipersonnel mines. Landmine Monitor has repeatedly asked for this information. Tanzanian Armed Forces used landmines in Uganda in 1979 and in Mozambique in 1986-1988.[2]

Landmine Problem

To date, Tanzania has not been considered heavily affected by antipersonnel landmines. However, the west of the country has seen a significant number of mine-affected refugees fleeing from DR Congo, Burundi, Rwanda, and Uganda. By the end of September 1999, Tanzania was sheltering some 276,000 Burundian, 100,000 Congolese, and 20,000 Rwandan refugees.[3]

Tanzania’s main link to the landmine problem is the refugee population in the Kigoma area, where several camps host refugees from Rwanda and Burundi. Refugees arriving in Tanzania have been maimed or injured by mines. (See especially Landmine Monitor Report 2000-Burundi).

Landmine Casualties

Data collected from Maweni hospital shows that thirty-eight refugees injured by explosions, including landmines, were treated at the hospital since 1997, including thirteen since March 1999.[4] Landmine Monitor was also informed that there were ten cases of landmine explosions involving civilians in various areas of Kagera region in the northwest.[5] In September 1999, a boy named Samuel Elikana was killed by a mine while grazing cattle on the border in Ngara district in the northwest. It is believed the landmine was planted by fighting parties in Burundi.[6]

Mine Action

No survey or assessment has been conducted on the mine/UXO problem in Tanzania and there are currently no mine clearance or mine awareness education programs underway. UNICEF and UNHCR are the main players in humanitarian mine action in the western part of the country. The International Committee of the Red Cross has donated basic medical and surgical materials to Kigoma Regional Hospital.[7]

No compensation is given to local people affected by landmines. Those injured are treated at Maweni hospital and provided with other assistance under the support of international bodies through the government. Some laws and policies exist in Tanzania to support people with disabilities, including those affected by landmines. Mine victims are normally taken to disabled centers.


[1] Reports from “International Conference On Improvement of Human Security, Through the Control and Management of Small Arms,” held in Arusha, Tanzania, 22-26 March 2000, and “The Great Lakes Region and Horn of Africa Conference on the proliferation of small arms,” Nairobi, 12-15 March 2000.
[2] Human Rights Watch, Still Killing: Landmines in Southern Africa (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1997), pp. 71, 140.
[3] ICRC Regional Delegation in Kenya, Fact Sheet, 28 January 2000, p. 3.
[4] Information provided by Rev. Marco Badeleya, Maweni Regional Hospital, Kigoma, 14 April 2000.
[5] Information provided by Sister Mary Kashaga, Ujirani Mwema, Bukoba, 8 April 2000. Data collected from 20 March-7 April, 2000.
[6] John Ongeri, “Landmines Kills Herdboy in Ngara,” The African Newspaper, 20 September 1999, p. 1.
[7] ICRC Regional Delegation in Kenya, Fact Sheet, 28 January 2000, p. 3.