Central African Republic

Cluster Munition Ban Policy

Last updated: 13 September 2021

Summary

Signatory the Central African Republic has pledged to ratify the convention, but has not yet done so. It last participated in a meeting of the convention in 2014. The Central African Republic voted in favor of a key United Nations (UN) resolution promoting universalization of the convention in December 2020.

According to the Central African Republic, it has never used, produced, or exported cluster munitions and its stockpiled cluster munitions have been destroyed.

Policy

The Central African Republicsigned the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 3 December 2008.

The status of ratification is not known. Previously, in 2013, government representatives said that internal armed conflict was delaying ratification of the convention.[1] Prior to 2013, officials said that the ratification was pending.[2]

The Central African Republic participated in a regional meeting of the diplomatic Oslo Process that created the convention, in Kampala, Uganda in September 2008.[3] It signed the convention in Oslo in December 2008.

The Central African Republic participated in meetings of the convention until 2014.[4] It was invited to, but did not attend, the convention’s Second Review Conference held virtually in November 2020.

In December 2020, the Central African Republic voted in favor of a UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolution urging states outside the convention to “join as soon as possible.”[5] It has voted in favor of the annual UNGA resolution promoting the convention since 2015.[6]

The Central African Republic has voted in favor of previous UNGA resolutions condemning the use of cluster munitions in Syria.[7]

The Central African Republic is a State Party to the Mine Ban Treaty. It is not party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW).

Use, production, transfer, and stockpiling

The Central African Republic has stated that it has never used, produced, or transferred cluster munitions and that it has no stocks of cluster munitions.[8]

Officials indicated that cluster munitions have been recovered from non-state armed groups operating in the country in the past.[9]



[1] Cluster Munition Coalition (CMC) meeting with Désiré Laurent Malibangar, Coordinator, Ministry of Defense, Lomé, 22 May 2013. The Central African Republic delegation to the Convention on Cluster Munitions Fourth Meeting of States Parties in September 2013 also informed the CMC that ratification had been delayed by conflict.

[2] Statement of the Central African Republic, Accra Regional Conference on the Universalization of the Convention on Cluster Munitions, Accra, 28 May 2012; and statement of the Central African Republic, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Meeting of States Parties, Beirut, 14 September 2011.

[3] For details on the Central African Republic’s cluster munition policy and practice up to early 2009, see Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Landmine Action, Banning Cluster Munitions: Government Policy and Practice (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada, May 2009), p. 55.

[4] The Central African Republic participated in Meetings of States Parties until 2014 as well as regional workshops on the convention. It did not participate in the First Review Conference in Dubrovnik, Croatia in September 2015, nor intersessional meetings in 2011–2015.

[5] “Implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions”, UNGA Resolution 75/62, 7 December 2020.

[6] With the exception of 2017, when the Central African Republic was absent from the UNGA vote on the resolution.

[7]Situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic,” UNGA Resolution 73/182, 17 December 2018. The Central African Republic voted in favor of similar resolutions in 2013–2017. It abstained from the vote on similar resolutions during 2018 and in December 2019. See, for example, “Situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic,” UNGA Resolution 74/169, 18 December 2019. The Central African Republic was absent from the vote in December 2020.

[8] Statement by Antoine Gambi, Ministry of Defense, Convention on Cluster Munitions Signing Conference, Oslo, 4 December 2008. Notes by Landmine Action.

[9] CMC meeting with Désiré Laurent Malibangar, Ministry of Defense, Accra, 29 May 2012. The official made this clarification after the Central African Republic told States Parties in 2011 that it had destroyed a stockpile of cluster munitions. Statement of the Central African Republic, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Meeting of States Parties, Beirut, 14 September 2011.


Mine Ban Policy

Last updated: 18 December 2019

Policy

The Central African Republic (CAR) acceded to the Mine Ban Treaty on 8 November 2002, becoming a State Party on 1 May 2003. CAR has declared that existing legislation is sufficient to enforce the antipersonnel mine prohibition domestically.[1]

CAR did not participate in the Ottawa Process that lead to the Mine Ban Treaty. It has attended two Mine Ban Treaty Meetings of States Parties, in September 2002 (when it announced its intention to join the treaty) and in 2005, in addition to some meetings of the intersessional Standing Committees in Geneva. Since 2005, CAR has not attended any meeting of the treaty, including the Second and Third Review Conferences, Meetings of States Parties, or intersessional meetings. It submitted an initial Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 report in November 2004, but has not submitted any subsequent annual reports.

On 5 December 2018, CAR voted in favor of UN General Assembly (UNGA) Resolution 73/61 promoting universalization and implementation of the convention, as it has in previous years.[2]

CAR is not a party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons. CAR is a signatory state to the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

Use, production, transfer, and stockpiling

CAR has reported that it has not produced, exported, or imported antipersonnel mines, including for training purposes, and it is not known to have ever used them.[3]

There have been no reports of antipersonnel mine use in the internal conflict between the government and rebel forces since 2013. However, several types of landmines, including M19 and TC/6 antivehicle mines and NR442 antipersonnel mines, were photographed by researchers from Human Rights Watch (HRW) and by a journalist from France24 News in February 2014 among the weapons seized from armed groups by French forces near Mpoko.[4]

Also, the Belgian-made NR442 bounding fragmentation mines and the containers for the pressure fuzes for the mines appear in a photo released by the French Ministry of Defense in February 2014. These mines were destroyed by explosive ordnance disposal experts from the French peacekeeping mission as part of Operation Sangaris.[5]

Mines were also present in photographs taken on 30 June 2014 when UN Mine Action Service (UNMAS) visited Camp du Roux where poorly stored ammunition was found and assessed.[6]



[1] CAR’s Article 7 report declares Law 64.34 of 20 November 1964 on firearms and Law 62.321 of 3 December 2002, also on firearms. Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report, November 2004, Form A.

[2] “Implementation of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction,” UNGA Resolution 73/61, 5 December 2018.

[3] Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report, November 2004, Form A.

[4] Email from Peter Bouckaert, Emergencies Director, HRW, 20 February 2014.

[5] Ministry of Defense, “Sangaris : destruction des munitions saisies,” 19 June 2014.

[6] Ministry of Defense, “Sangaris : journée de désarmement volontaire à Bangui,” 19 June 2014.