Mine Ban Policy

Last updated: 28 September 2022


The Republic of Tunisia signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 4 December 1997 and ratified it on 9 July 1999, becoming a State Party on 1 January 2000.

Tunisia has listed 10 laws that it considers implementation measures for the Mine Ban Treaty.[1]

Tunisia last submitted an annual Article 7 transparency report in 2022, covering the period from April 2021 to April 2022.[2]

Tunisia has participated in most meetings of the Mine Ban Treaty, but did not attend the Nineteenth Meeting of States Parties, which was held virtually in November 2021.

Production, transfer, stockpile destruction, and retention

Tunisia has never produced or exported antipersonnel mines, but has imported them in the past.[3] Tunisia completed the destruction of 18,259 stockpiled antipersonnel mines in September 2003.[4]

In its initial declaration in July 2000, Tunisia reported retaining 5,000 antipersonnel mines (4,000 PMA-3 and 1,000 PROM-1 mines) for purposes permitted under Article 3 of the Mine Ban Treaty.[5] In its Article 7 report submitted in 2022, Tunisia reported that it retains 4,341 mines for training, and that 24 mines were consumed for training purposes during the reporting period.[6] Tunisia has not specified the type of retained landmines that it has destroyed, nor has it reported in detail on the intended purposes and actual uses of retained mines, as agreed by States Parties in 2004.


Since April 2013, new use of improvised mines and other improvised explosive devices (IEDs) by non-state armed groups (NSAGs) has been reported in the Qsrein Wilaya/Kasserine and Gafsa governorates near the Algerian border.[7] Villagers in the area have stated that the landmines inhibit their livelihoods, and that the mines have been laid with no known pattern or warnings.[8]

As in the previous few years, new casualties caused by victim-activated improvised landmines in Tunisia were reported in 2021–2022 in the Jebel Al-Cha’anby area.[9] In 2019, multiple incidents were reported in Gafsa governorate, in southwest Tunisia.[10] The Monitor has been unable to confirm when the improvised mines were laid. Previously, in May 2013, the Ministry of Defense stated that the mines laid in Jebel Al-Cha’anby were homemade mines constructed from a plastic container with a chemical initiator, making detection difficult.[11] A spokesperson said, “the mines that exploded were made of ammonium nitrate fertilizer and flammable materials that can easily explode when exposed to heat.”[12]

In May 2013, a police official told Human Rights Watch (HRW) that casualties in late April 2013 were caused by “artisanal” antipersonnel mines that exploded horizontally. From this description, the landmines would appear to be homemade explosive devices initiated by a tripwire, similar to Claymore-type mines.[13] Tunisia has not reported on the contamination by improvised mines in its annual Article 7 transparency report.

[1] Tunisia Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report (for the period April 2019 to April 2020), Form A. See, Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Database. The most salient actions include Law No. 2003-1266, dated 9 June 2003; Law No. 2005-47, dated 27 June 2005; and Law No. 2006-464, dated 15 February 2006.

[2] Tunisia Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report (for the period April 2021 to April 2022). Tunisia has provided annual updated Article 7 transparency reports every year since its initial report was submitted on 9 July 2000.

[3] See, ICBL, Landmine Monitor Report 2005: Toward a Mine-Free World (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada, October 2005), p. 577.

[4] See, ICBL, Landmine Monitor Report 2004: Toward a Mine-Free World (New York: Human Rights Watch, October 2004), p. 821.

[5] Tunisia Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report, 9 July 2000, Form D.

[6] Tunisia Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report (for the period April 2021 to April 2022), Form D.

[7] Two Islamist NSAGs operating in the area reportedly merged in January 2014: Ansar al-Sharia Tunisia and the Okba Ibn Nafaa Brigade.

[8] Lilia Blaise, Hamdi Tlili, and Fadil Aliriza,“Tunisia's forgotten victims of jihadist landmines,” France 24, 27 May 2021.

[9] See, for example, “Tunisia: Woman Injured in Landmine Explosion Near Jebal Samema,” All Africa, 5 December 2021; “Tunisia’s defense minister visits soldiers wounded in Mount Salloum clashes,” Arab News, 16 August 2022; “Landmine blast injures teenage girl in Tunisia,” The North Africa Post, 16 February 2021; “Tunisia: Landmines claim more lives in Kasserine, two children killed in blast,” The North Africa Journal, 11 March 2021; “Tunisia: Citizen Dies in Landmine Blast in Mount Semmama, Kasserine,” Tunis Afrique Presse, 16 June 2021; and “Tunisia: Soldier wounded in landmine blast in restive Kasserine,” The North Africa Post, 20 April 2020.

[10] See, for example, “4 wounded in landmine blast in southwestern Tunisia,” Xinhua, 21 April 2019; and “1 soldier injured in landmine explosion in Tunisia,” Xinhua, 2 February 2019.

[13] Email from HRW researcher, 3 May 2013.