Mine Ban Policy

Last updated: 18 December 2019


The Republic of Zambia signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 12 December 1997 and ratified it on 23 February 2001, becoming a State Party on 1 August 2001. Zambia enacted comprehensive domestic implementation legislation on 12 December 2003, which includes penal sanctions.[1]

At the intersessional Standing Committee meetings in June 2008, Zambia reported that its national legislation directly covers matters of interpretation and implementation related to Articles 1 and 2.[2] It stated that it joins others in calling for a common understanding that any mine that can be set off unintentionally by a person, thereby functioning as an antipersonnel mine, is banned, including antivehicle mines with sensitive fuzes or sensitive anti-handling devices. It also stated its understanding that transit of antipersonnel mines is prohibited, and that participation in joint military operations must be in adherence with the convention.[3]

Zambia regularly 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, where it provided a statement on Article 5 mine clearance obligations.[4] Zambia consistently submitted updated Article 7 transparency reports through 2013, but has provided just two since, in 2015 and 2019.

Zambia served on the Standing Committee on Mine Clearance, Mine Risk Education and Mine Action Technologies (2011–2012), Committee on Article 5 Implementation (2015–2016), and Committee on Cooperative Compliance (2017–2018).

Zambia is party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons and its Amended Protocol II on landmines and Protocol V on explosive remnants of war. It is also party to the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

Production, transfer, stockpile destruction, and retained mines

Zambia has not produced or exported antipersonnel mines. Zambia completed the destruction of a stockpile of 3,345 antipersonnel mines in October 2004.[5] The mines were imported from China, Italy, and Russia.[6]

Zambia retains 907 mines of six different types.[7] Zambia has not reported on the intended purposes and actual uses of its retained mines in recent years.

[1] Act No. 16 of 2003, short-title: “Prohibition of Anti-Personnel Mines Act, 2003,” date of assent 11 December 2003, enacted by the Parliament of Zambia on 12 December 2003. The act “became effective” in August 2004. Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report, Form A, 30 March 2005.

[2] The legislation is explicit about a prohibition on antivehicle mines with sensitive fuzes or antihandling devices which function as antipersonnel mines. It states that “transfer” includes “the transit of anti-personnel mines into, out of, or through Zambia by any means,” and says that members of the armed forces can participate in operations or other military activities with the armed forces of a state not party to the Convention, “Provided that the operation, exercise or military activity is not in contravention of the Convention and that such participation does not amount to active assistance in any activity prohibited by the Convention and this Act.”

[3] Statement of Zambia, Standing Committee on the General Status and Operation of the Convention, Mine Ban Treaty, Geneva, 6 June 2008. Notes by the Monitor.

[4] Statement of Zambia, Mine Ban Treaty Seventeenth Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 29 November 2018.

[5] Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report, Form F, 13 April 2005. The 6,691 mines included the following: 535 ALPER 120 (China), 571 AUPS 24 (Italy), 220 POMZ-2 (Russia), 676 MAUS 58 (Russia), 860 T69 (China), 1,225 T59 (Russia), 1,804 T58 (China), 226 T VARS 40 (Italy), and 574 VARS 50 (Italy).

[6] Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report, Form F, 13 April 2005.

[7] Ibid., Form D, 29 March 2019.