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Country Reports
Tanzania, Landmine Monitor Report 2003


Key developments since May 2002: Tanzania submitted its initial Article 7 transparency report on 5 February 2003 and an update on 30 April 2003. It declared a stockpile of 23,987 antipersonnel mines. Tanzania intends to retain 1,146 antipersonnel mines for training and research. On 27 March 2003, Tanzania destroyed its first 9,837 antipersonnel mines and it has developed a plan to complete destruction by September 2004.

Mine Ban Policy

Tanzania signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 3 December 1997 and ratified it on 13 November 2000. The treaty entered into force for the country on 1 May 2001. On 5 February 2003, Tanzania submitted its initial Article 7 transparency report, which was due by 28 October 2001. The report covers the period from 1 May 2001 to 28 October 2002. On 30 April 2003, it submitted its first annual update, which covers 1 May 2002 to 30 April 2003.

Tanzania has not adopted any new legal national implementation measures. It stated, “Tanzania considers [it] not necessary to have a new law specifically for the accomplishment of the Ottawa Convention in the country. Existing law ‘The Tanzania Armaments Control Act, 1991’ is deemed sufficient.”[1]

Tanzania reports that it has taken a number of other steps regarding the treaty. These measures include informing the civilian population about the treaty through parliament, the media, and other meetings; dissemination by defense headquarters of instructions on the implementation of the Mine Ban Treaty to its fighting troops; and submission by fighting units and installation depots of reports on stockpiles of antipersonnel mines.[2] In January 2003, a military official told Landmine Monitor that Tanzania is committed to fulfilling the requirements of the treaty.[3]

After not attending the Second or Third Meetings of States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty, Tanzania did attend the Fourth Meeting in September 2002 and, for the first time, participated in the intersessional Standing Committee meetings in February and May 2003. Tanzania’s delegate to the February 2003 meetings made a statement calling on signatory states to ratify the Mine Ban Treaty, singling out Burundi, and urging the authorities in that country to join and help universalize the treaty.[4]

Tanzania voted in support of UN General Assembly Resolution 57/74 in November 2002, promoting universalization and implementation of the Mine Ban Treaty.

Production, Transfer and Stockpiling

Tanzania reports that it has not produced antipersonnel mines.[5] It is not believed to have exported mines.

In its Article 7 report, Tanzania for the first time made available information about its stockpile of antipersonnel mines. Previously, it had not even officially acknowledged having a stockpile.

In its April 2003 report, Tanzania declared a stockpile of 23,987 antipersonnel mines, of which it intends to retain 1,146.[6] In its February 2003 report, it identified a stockpile of 23,306, of which 369 were to be retained.[7] The reports give few specific designations for mine types, instead identifying fragmentation and blast antipersonnel mines produced by China, Egypt, Germany, India, South Korea, Russia, and UK.

The 1,146 mines to be retained include British No. 4 mines and other blast and fragmentation mines produced by China, India, and South Korea. They will be retained “as training aids” and “for demonstration purposes.” The 777 additional retained mines in the April 2003 report are allocated to the biosensor research project being undertaken at Sokoine University of Agriculture.[8] (See Research and Development section below).

The remaining 22,841 mines are scheduled for destruction in four phases, which started in March 2003 and will be completed by 30 September 2004.[9] Tanzania’s treaty-mandated deadline to complete stockpile destruction is 1 May 2005.

On 27 March 2003, field engineers of the Tanzania People’s Defense Forces (TPDF) destroyed the first lot of 9,837 antipersonnel mines at Msata in Bagamoyo district, Coast region, using the demolition method.[10] The types destroyed included fragmentation mines of Russian, Chinese and unknown origin, as well as British, Indian, and Chinese blast mines. Landmine Monitor and members of the diplomatic corps witnessed the destruction.[11]

Tanzania will destroy a second lot of 5,489 antipersonnel mines at Msata between 1 July and 30 September 2003. These include Chinese, German and Russian fragmentation mines and British and Indian blast mines. Between 1 January and 31 March 2004, demolition of 4,338 Chinese and British blast type mines will take place in Monduli district in Arusha region. The last lot of 3,177 Chinese, Egyptian and British fragmentation mines will be destroyed in the Tabora region between 1 July and 30 September 2004.[12]

Landmine Problem and Mine Action

Tanzania reports, “There are no mined areas in Tanzania.”[13] Although there is no evidence that mines are planted inside Tanzania, mine survivors from Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are found in Tanzania. There are no known mine risk education programs for the refugees who enter Tanzania from these mine-affected countries. During this reporting period, Landmine Monitor was unable to access the border area to research possible new developments. (See Burundi Report).

Research and Development

The Belgian government has dedicated approximately US$700,000 for the Apopo Research Project, which is based at Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) in Morogoro. This six-year project is an effort to find reliable, inexpensive means for demining in southern Africa. It is investigating the use of biosensors (rats) in humanitarian mine clearance operations. The presence of a rodent research collaborative and the existing partnership between the University of Antwerp and SUA provides a solid base to conduct the research.

While Tanzania does not provide any direct financial support, its in-kind contribution is facilitating the operation of the project.[14] Tanzania also allocated 777 antipersonnel mines from its stockpiles for the Apopo project. These are blast and fragmentation antipersonnel mines from India, China and the United Kingdom.[15]

Landmine Casualties and Survivor Assistance

According to a recent UNICEF study, eight civilian mine casualties injured across the border in Burundi were treated in hospitals in the Kasula district of Tanzania in 2002; 43 civilian mine casualties were treated in 2001.[16] A Landmine Monitor survey in the border area in early 2002 also identified seven landmine casualties from the DR Congo who had received treatment in Tanzania, between August and October 2001, including five men, one woman, and a three-year-old boy.[17]

Public health facilities and services available for landmine survivors along the Tanzania-Burundi border are sparse and under-funded. Tanzania has no specific funding for landmine survivor assistance. Survivors are treated in local hospitals (mostly mission hospitals in the border area); however, hospitals are not specifically equipped to handle landmine cases.[18]

In 2002, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) assisted Tanzania to cope with war-wounded arriving across the border from Burundi and the DR Congo. Medical supplies and on-the-job assistance were provided to three hospitals in Kigoma, Heri and Kibonda, which treated 67 war-wounded patients, and to seven first aid posts. The ICRC also arranged for 55 amputees to be fitted with prostheses at the Tanzanian Training Center for Orthopedic Technicians.[19]

[1] Article 7 Report, Form A, 30 April 2003. Tanzania repeated this position at the 6 February 2003 Stockpile Destruction Standing Committee meeting in Geneva, stating that current law is considered sufficient for implementation (Landmine Monitor/HRW notes).
[2] Article 7 Report, Form A, 5 February 2003.
[3] Interview with Vincent F. Mrisho, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defense, Dar es Salaam, 8 January 2003.
[4] Statement by Tanzania, Standing Committee on Stockpile Destruction, Geneva, 6 February 2003 (Landmine Monitor notes).
[5] Article 7 Report, Forms A and E (“not applicable”), 30 April 2003.
[6] Article 7 Report, Forms A, B and D, 30 April 2003.
[7] Article 7 Report, Forms A, B, and D, 5 February 2003.
[8] Article 7 Report, Form D, 30 April 2003.
[9] Ibid.
[10] Article 7 Report, Form G, 30 April 2003.
[11] Lwanga Mwambande Chalinze, “Army Destroys 9,837 Landmines As Foreign Envoys Watch,” The Guardian, 28 March 2003.
[12] Article 7 Report, Form F, 30 April 2003; Article 7 Report, Form F, 5 February 2003.
[13] Article 7 Report, Forms A and C (“not applicable”), 30 April 2003.
[14] Interview with Bart Weetjens, Director, APOPO Project, Sokoine University of Agriculture, Morogoro, 9 January 2003.
[15] Article 7 Report, Form D, 30 April 2003.
[16] UNICEF Burundi, “Mine Victims in Burundi in 2001and 2002,” undated, p. 28.
[17] Landmine Monitor Report 2002, pp. 480-481.
[18] Ibid, pp. 480-482.
[19] ICRC, “Annual Report 2002,” Geneva, June 2003, p. 130.