Mine Ban Policy

Last updated: 18 December 2019


The Republic of Uganda signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 3 December 1997 and ratified on 25 February 1999, becoming a State Party on 1 August 1999. National implementation legislation has reportedly been under development since 2004, but still had not been enacted as of August 2011.[1]

Uganda frequently attends meetings of the treaty, including the Third Review Conference in Maputo in June 2014, and more recently the Seventeenth Meeting of States Parties in Geneva in November 2018. Uganda did not attend the intersessional meetings of the treaty in Geneva in May 2019. Uganda often submitted updated annual Article 7 transparency reports through 2011 but has not since submitted an updated report.

Uganda served on the Standing Committee on Victim Assistance and Socio-Economic Reintegration (2011) and the Committee on Enhancement of Cooperation and Assistance (2015-2016).

Uganda is party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons and its original Protocol II on landmines, but not Amended Protocol II or Protocol V on explosive remnants of war. Uganda is a signatory to the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

Production, transfer, use, stockpiling, and retention

Uganda produced antipersonnel mines until 1995 at a state-run production facility, the National Enterprise Corporation (NEC), located at Nakasongora. It has stated that it has never exported antipersonnel mines.[2] Uganda completed the destruction of its stockpile of 6,383 antipersonnel mines in July 2003.[3] Uganda last reported the discovery or seizure of additional antipersonnel mines in 2007.[4]

In every Article 7 report since 2004, Uganda has reported retaining 1,764 Type 72 antipersonnel mines for training purposes.[5] Uganda has never reported in any detail on the intended purposes and actual uses of its retained mines, a measure agreed by States Parties at the review conferences held in 2004 and 2009. Uganda has not provided an updated report since 2011.

In 2000 and 2001, there were serious and credible allegations indicating the strong possibility of Ugandan forces used antipersonnel mines in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), particularly in the June 2000 battle for Kisangani. The government denied any use, but pledged to investigate; the results were never made known.[6] The government consistently accused Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebels of using antipersonnel mines in Uganda until 2004, and regularly reported the seizure or recovery of stockpiled antipersonnel mines from the LRA until 2005.

[1] The draft law is titled “1997 Mine Ban Implementation Bill 2002.” In May 2002, Uganda reported the act was before parliament. In May 2004, officials told the Monitor that a revised draft was due to be presented to the cabinet for approval before going to parliament. In May 2005, Uganda reported, “An implementation act is ready to be presented before Parliament.” In December 2005, Uganda reported that national implementation legislation was “ready for parliamentary debate.” In May 2007, an official told the Monitor that the bill still had to be approved by the cabinet before being sent to parliament. No further update has been provided.

[2] In January 2005, a UN report said that landmines had been supplied from a Uganda People’s Defence Force camp to a rebel group in the DRC in violation of a UN embargo. The report did not specify if the mines were antipersonnel or antivehicle. Uganda strongly denied the allegation as “patently false and inflammatory.” See, Landmine Monitor Report 2005, p. 596.

[3] This figure was considerably higher than Uganda initially indicated would be destroyed, apparently because of additional mines captured from rebel forces and a decrease in the number of mines kept for training purposes. Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report, Form G, 5 December 2005. See also, Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 746.

[4] See, Landmine Monitor Report 2008, p. 711, for details on destruction in 2007. In 2009, Uganda reported destroying 120 Type 72 mines, but it did not note where the mines came from or who had possession of them before their destruction. Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report (for the period 2 April 2008 to 2 April 2009), Form G.

[5] Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report (for the period April 2009 to April 2010), Form D. At the Seventh Meeting of States Parties in September 2006, Uganda said it was retaining 1,798 mines of seven types for training purposes, but reported the destruction of 202 mines in training during the previous year. Statement of Uganda, Seventh Meeting of States Parties, Mine Ban Treaty, Geneva, 19 September 2006. See also, Landmine Monitor Report 2007, p. 700.

[6] See, Landmine Monitor Report 2004, pp. 834–835.