Cluster Munition Ban Policy

Last updated: 21 July 2015

Five-Year Review: State Party Mauritania ratified the convention on 1 February 2012 and reports that existing legislation is sufficient to enforce implementation of the convention’s provisions. Mauritania has participated in every Meeting of States Parties of the convention and in 2014, condemned new use of cluster munitions, including in South Sudan, Syria, and Ukraine. In its initial transparency report for the convention provided in 2013, Mauritania confirmed it has never used, produced, imported, or exported cluster munitions and has no stockpile, including for training or research purposes.


The Islamic Republic of Mauritania signed the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 19 April 2010, ratified on 1 February 2012, and the convention entered into force for the country on 1 August 2012.

Mauritania has reported its ratification legislation, Law 2011-050, under national implementation measures.[1] In April 2014, a government official said that international treaties ratified by Mauritania are automatically incorporated into the domestic law so there was no need for new or amended legislation specific to the Convention on Cluster Munitions.[2]

Mauritania provided its initial Article 7 transparency report for the Convention on Cluster Munitions in March 2013 and submitted annual updated reports in April 2014 and May 2015.[3]

Mauritania actively participated in the Oslo Process that led to the creation of the 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions, making many strong contributions towards ensuring the most comprehensive treaty possible.[4] Mauritania did not sign the convention in December 2008, apparently due to political uncertainty, but signed at the UN in New York in April 2010.

Mauritania supports the work of the Convention on Cluster Munitions. It has participated in every Meeting of States Parties of the convention. At the Fifth Meeting of States Parties in San Jose, Costa Rica in September 2014, Mauritania announced the completion of clearance of cluster munition remnants from its territory, formally stating it is now in compliance with the convention’s obligation to clear all contaminated areas.

Mauritania has attended all of the convention’s intersessional meetings in Geneva, including in June 2015. It has also participated in regional workshops on cluster munitions, such as the one held in Lomé, Togo in May 2013.

At the Fifth Meeting of States Parties, Mauritania condemned the use of cluster munitions in South Sudan, Syria, and Ukraine.[5] It has also voted in favor of UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolutions condemning the use of cluster munitions in Syria, such as Resolution 69/189 on 18 December 2014, which expressed “outrage” at the continued use.[6]

Mauritania has yet to elaborate its views on certain important issues relating to the interpretation and implementation of the convention, such as the prohibition on transit, the prohibition on foreign stockpiling, and the prohibition on investment in cluster munition production. During the negotiation of the convention in Dublin in May 2008, Mauritania called for clarity of language to ensure that the prohibition on assistance with prohibited acts would still be fully applicable during joint military operations with states not party.[7]

Mauritania is a State Party to the Mine Ban Treaty. It is not party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons.

Use, production, transfer, and stockpiling

Mauritania has stated that it has never used, produced, or transferred cluster munitions and does not have a stockpile of the weapons, including for research or training.[8]

[1] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report (for the period 12 January 2012 to 31 December 2012), Form A, 18 March 2013.

[2] CMC meetings with Lt.-Col. Alioune Ould Mohamed El Hacen, National Coordinator, National Humanitarian Demining Programme for Development (PNDHD), Ministry of Interior and Decentralisation, Geneva, 8 and 15 April 2014.

[3] The initial report covers calendar year 2012, while the update provided in April 2014 covers calendar year 2013. The report submitted in 2015 consists of the cover sheet for calendar year 2014, indicating no changes from the previous year.

[4] See ICBL, Cluster Munition Monitor 2010 (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada: October 2010), pp. 163–164.

[5] Statement of Mauritania, Convention on Cluster Munitions Fifth Meeting of States Parties, San Jose, 4 September 2014. Notes by the CMC.

[6] “Situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic,” UNGA Resolution A/RES/69/189, 18 December 2014. Mauritania voted in favor of a similar resolution on 18 December 2013.

[7] For Article 21 on relations with states not party, Mauritania proposed to delete the phrase “notwithstanding the provisions of Article 1” (Article 1 prohibits assistance with banned acts). Statements of Mauritania, Dublin Diplomatic Conference on Cluster Munitions, 20 May 2008, 23 May 2008, and 27 May 2008. Notes by Landmine Action.

[8] Forms B, C, D, and E of Mauritania’s Article 7 reports were not completed and the cover sheet lists them as “sans objet” or not applicable. Mauritania has stated that it does not stockpile cluster munitions. Interview with Lt.-Col. Alioune O. Mohamed El Hacen, PNDHD, Ministry of Interior and Decentralisation, Vientiane, 10 November 2010; email, 4 April 2011; and Monitor meeting, Geneva, 15 April 2013.