CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
The Central African Republic has not signed the Mine Ban Treaty. In an interview, C.A.R.'s Ambassador to Belgium said the C.A.R. supports a partial ban on antipersonnel mines negotiated through the Conference on Disarmament.(724)
The C.A.R. is not believed to be mine-affected. There is no evidence that the C.A.R. has ever produced or exported landmines. Government officials acknowledge that there is no practical way to control the movement of weapons, including landmines, across the C.A.R.'s territory, due to a near-complete lack of border controls. It is assumed that C.A.R. has a stockpile of AP mines, but no information is available.
When France withdrew its garrisons from Bangui and Bouar in early 1998, no stocks of landmines were left behind. Nor is the Francophone African peacekeeping force which went in to deal with a crisis and army mutiny in early 1997 in C.A.R. believed to have used mines. The successor peacekeeping force, the U.N.-backed MINURCA (which shared a high proportion of its personnel with MISAB) is also not believed to have used landmines.
Although not as badly affected by central Africa's politico-military crisis as are countries such as Congo-Brazzaville, the Central African Republic is traversing a period of great insecurity, especially in rural areas and the eastern region, close to the border with Sudan. The situation is capable of deteriorating.
Comoros has not signed the Mine Ban Treaty. Possible reasons include the rolling political-factional crisis which has engulfed the islands' administration since the early 1990s.(725) French defense specialists suspect that non-signature could signal the existence of mine stocks which the Comoran defence establishment would prefer to keep secret.(726) However, the Comoran chief government spokesperson, Ali Msaidie, said that signature and ratification of the treaty are under consideration, and that the question was formally placed on the government's agenda in March 1999.(727) The government took office at the start of 1999. Msaidie also stated categorically that Comoros possesses no stocks of mines of any kind. Comoros is not known to have produced or exported AP mines. Despite a history of military coups, mercenaries appear not to have used landmines in their attempts to take or defend the islands. French forces stationed there appear not to have deployed the weapons either.(728)
Local journalists report that on Anjouan, landmines belonging to a construction company were stolen in recent weeks from an army barracks where they had been placed for safekeeping.(729) The theft is believed to have been the work of supporters of Foundi Ibrahim Abdallah, one of the two rival separatist leaders on the island.
Mine Ban Policy
Congo-Brazzaville has not signed the Mine Ban Treaty. It was not an active participant in the Ottawa Process, though it endorsed the pro-treaty Brussels Declaration of June 1997, and voted for pro-ban UN General Assembly resolutions in 1996 and 1997. Diplomats explain that the politico-military crisis which began with the 1997 civil war has pushed the issue down the political agenda.(730) In addition, it is possible that current head of state Denis Sassou Nguesso is reluctant to give up the weapon under present tense circumstances.
In the months after his defeat of elected predecessor Pascal Lissouba, Sassou has steadily lost control of areas of the country and has become increasingly reliant upon the support of Angolan forces from across the border in the Cabinda enclave. Other military forces present on Congolese territory are thought to include Rwandan army units, exiled Rwandan Hutu Interahamwe, fighters from the Democratic Republic of Congo, including former members of late Zairian president Mobutu Sese Seko's feared Division Spéciale Presidentielle, and possibly even Chadian elements.(731)
Production, Transfer, Stockpiling
While Congo-Brazzaville is not known to have produced or exported antipersonnel mines, it has them in its arsenal and has used them, most recently in the 1997 civil war. It is highly likely that not only the formally constituted national armed forces--now in a state of considerable disorganization--but also the various militia aligned with major political players have access to stocks of landmines.(732)
Landmines were used widely by both sides during the 1997 civil war. In Brazzaville itself, the strategically sensitive areas around the airport and the city's main power station were heavily mined, reportedly with both AT mines and AP mines. Other utilities had unmarked minefields laid around them.(733) The residential quarters of Poto-Poto and Mikalou were also affected, although it is thought this was more by contagion and carelessness than by concerted deployment.(734) Information is considerably thinner where provincial regions are concerned.
Before and during the 1997 civil war, both Lissouba and Sassou reportedly constituted major weapons dumps in their respective strongholds of Dolisie (in the Nibolek region of the south) and Oyo. Although it is near-certain that landmines figured in these caches, there is no documentary proof. The French government became sufficiently alarmed by both sides' use of AP mines in September 1997 to warn publicly against the use of the devices.(735)
Although the front lines in Brazzaville were heavily mined during the battle for the city, the problem is thought to have been relatively minor in and around Pointe Noire, the port city and oil capital. The sheer speed of the Angolan advance out of the Cabinda enclave led the Lissoubaiste garrison to surrender virtually before a shot was fired. It is thought unlikely that they had time to lay mines, even if they possessed them.
In the recent revival of conflict in southern Brazzaville and the Pool and Nibolek areas, there is as yet little hard information on the possible use of landmines, due in part to the sheer danger of field research. However, international representatives who remain in Brazzaville do not at present regard mine-laying as a significant problem.(736) The nature of the war has changed since the involvement in strength of Angolan forces: artillery barrages appear more central to their thinking than the use of mines.(737)
There are indications that major protagonists might consider deploying landmines if possible, however. On 8 March 1999, the U.K. daily newspaper the Mirror reported that ex-President Pascal Lissouba, in exile in London since his defeat by Sassou in late 1997, was shopping for armaments to launch attacks against his successor, and reproduced apparently convincing documentation for the assertion. Among the materiel being sought on the international arms market were 100 mines and accessories for what was described as a "Camp in Africa" and 1,000 mines for "Headquarters." Interviewed by the Mirror , Lissouba "says he needs enough arms for a force of 2,000 men led by mercenaries."(738)
The way the list was leaked raised the possibility that someone intended to damage Lissouba's standing in the U.K.,(739) and it is not impossible that the publication of the episode was a calculated entrapment exercise mounted by anti-Lissouba interests in Paris or elsewhere. Sources close to Lissouba insist that he had no personal connection with the list and that, having decided to start equipping a force to secure Congo's borders in the event of any future return to power, he merely delegated aides to canvass international equipment dealers as to what materiel was hypothetically available and at what price.(740) However, the 'shopping list' sits potentially uneasily with the declaration by Lissouba's own government in June 1996 that Congo "has never produced" and "does not want to use" AP mines, and was in favor of a global ban on the devices.(741) Specified on the list are identifiable AP mine products.(742)
There is no overall survey of the mine problem in Congo-Brazzaville, although anecdotal evidence suggests that the problem is at its worst in Brazzaville itself. Many of the mines laid in 1997 have now been cleared with French assistance, but isolated mine incidents still reportedly occur.(743) Army engineers began clearing mines, with French assistance, immediately after Sassou Nguesso's victory in October 1997. They began with emergency clearance work around the major ministries in the capital. In the words of one, "We had to carry out a big operation fairly quickly…before people returned to work."(744) In late 1998, further clearance work was carried out around the airport, and civilian access to mined areas was carefully controlled.
The Sassou Nguesso government embarked on a series of announcements and public appeals to Brazzavillois by radio shortly after coming to power. In late 1998, Colonel Leonce Kabi, head of the army's engineering corps, confirmed that he was receiving a weekly average of twenty notifications of the existence of AT and AP mines from members of the public.(745) Although clearance work after 1997 appears to have been relatively thorough in Central Brazzaville, the revival of hostilities in 1998 probably prevented more constructive efforts to repair damage and develop affected areas.
There are no available records on mine-related injuries during or the after the civil wars of 1993 or 1997. Neither is it possible to assess the impact of mines in the most recent phase of the conflict from late 1998 onwards.(746) Repeated fighting and artillery damage has wrecked Brazzaville's medical infrastructure and has damaged national capacity for the treatment of landmine-related injuries.
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC, formerly Zaire) has been the subject of increasing allegations of landmine use since the uprising of anti-Mobutists and eastern Zairian Banyamulenge which triggered the successful offensive of Laurent Kabila's Alliance des forces Démocratiques pour la Libération (AFDL) in late 1996.
The flight of Mobutu and Kabila's accession to power, in April 1997, marked the end of nearly three decades of kleptocratic rule, which saw former Zaire virtually cease to exist as a meaningful national entity. Kabila had been closely backed by the Ugandan and Rwandan governments, who saw in him a solution to the threat to their borders posed by the exiled Rwandan Hutu Interahamwe forces responsible for the Rwandan genocide of 1994. It was Kabila's failure to live up to hopes of Kigali, Kampala and many of his own AFDL colleagues that led to a fresh rebellion against him in July-August 1998, under the political leadership of the Rassemblement Congolais pour la Démocratie (RCD) and with equally visible Rwandan and Ugandan involvement.
This has led to what is now referred to as Africa's "First World War."(747) Angola, Zimbabwe and Namibia deployed forces on Congolese territory in support of Kabila, as the RCD's advance threatened to turn into a rout of governmental forces. It also emerged in the first weeks of the revolt that Uganda and Rwanda were closely aligned with the RCD's military forces although both countries initially denied this. Virtually all these armies, both domestic and foreign, have been accused of laying mines. However, the situation is too chaotic at present for Landmine Monitor to make definitive assessments. Other countries to become directly or indirectly involved include Chad, Sudan and Libya, in a geopolitical convulsion whose final outcome is still far from certain.(748)
Mine Ban Policy
DRC has neither signed nor ratified the Mine Ban Treaty. This is generally thought to reflect the chaotic nature of political developments since Kabila arrived in power in May 1997. However, it may also reflect an unwillingness on the part of Kabila's top military staff to abandon the option of using a cheap and destructive weapon.(749) The DRC did in November 1998 vote in favor of the UN General Assembly resolution welcoming the addition of new signatories to the Mine Ban Treaty, urging states to sign and ratify, calling for full implementation of the treaty, and inviting States Parties and observers to the First Meeting of States Parties in Mozambique in May 1999.
Production, Transfer and Stockpiling
DRC is not a known producer of antipersonnel mines. Information on the transfer of antipersonnel mines of landmines either to or from DRC is not available at this time and Landmine Monitor has no information on stockpiled landmines.
The current role of landmines in the conflict is unclear. The difficulties of researching and reporting events on the ground are compounded by often sophisticated techniques of disinformation, employed by all protagonists. However, landmines have undoubtedly become a feature of conflict in Zaire/DRC in recent years.
During the final battle for the control of Rwanda at the height of the 1994 genocide, Zairian planes were used to transport weapons including Zairian-origin landmines to the retreating Forces armées rwandaises. Zairian airspace was used for a variety of other weapons deliveries, of various origins.(750) On 24 October 1995, landmines were reported at Goma, Kivu Nord province, presumably laid as part of the continuing conflict between Rwandan forces and exiled Hutu extremists, who at the time were in control of refugee camps in the area.
By the end of 1995, the UN had begun classifying the then Zaire as a mine-affected country, after staff of the ICRC and the American Refugee Committee had been injured in separate mine-related incidents.(751) Other incidents included an APM detonation at a water point at Panzi camp in August 1995, which maimed five children.(752) The Panzi area was the scene of several AT mine incidents in early 1996, with Rwandan Hutu Interahamwe as the prime suspects. At about this time, the Forces Armées Zairiennes (FAZ), the armed forces of then head of state Mobutu Sese Seko, engaged in some clearance and defusing work.
Meanwhile, the UN launched an in-country security newsflash to inform workers of the growing menace.(753) In November 1996, Hutu extremists were suspected to have taken delivery of fifty APMs of Italian origin, in one of many violations of the international arms embargo in place at the time.(754) In early 1997, UN sources noted that there had been approximately forty reported mine incidents since 1995, and suggested that both extremist Rwandan Hutu in exile and Rwandan army units were using the weapons. Also in 1997, as Kabila's forces advanced westwards, mercenaries hired by the Mobutu government made widespread use of landmines around the strategic airport of Kisangani. Reportedly no maps or charts were kept and when the mostly Serbian mercenaries(755) withdrew in disarray, the mines remained. It is not known what their continuing impact may be.
In October 1998, rebel commanders accused Kabila's Forces Armées Congolaises of using AP mines in their unsuccessful defense of the key strategic outpost of Kindu in Kasaï Orientale province. The commanders displayed cases of AP mines to reporters and claimed that they were going to demine Kindu to prevent civilian casualties.(756) Around the same time, an EU official accused Angolan forces of laying mines in southern DRC, in order to isolate rearguard forces of UNITA, as the Angolan war again began to intensify (see Angola).(757) There have been unconfirmed claims that a hybrid unit of RCD and Rwandan army personnel is active and using landmines in the Cabemba region, adjoining Angolan territory around Mbanza Kongo.(758)
On 26 November 1998, the Namibian Ministry of Defense confirmed that two of its soldiers in DRC had been killed when a landmine detonated. The Ministry offered no forensic information as to who had laid the mine in question, but stated that Namibia and its allies "hold Rwanda and Uganda responsible for using antipersonnel landmines, weapons which the international community has banned."(759) In December, it was reported that "invasion forces from Rwanda, Uganda and rebels fighting to topple President Laurent Kabila are laying minefields in and around Kabalo, Kalemle, Nyunau and Moba. The acting Minister of Defense, Cde. Sydney Sekeramayi…confirmed a number of Zimbabwean troops had fallen victim to landmines at the warfront in the DRC."(760)
According to the "Information Minister" of the RCD, Lambert Menga, RCD forces took Kabinda on 18 March 1999. Menga alleges that the last few miles into Kabinda itself gave RCD forces much difficulty due to seriously mined terrain.(761) According to Menga, the RCD has adopted the expedient of flying in cows from Goma and driving them in front of advancing forces as a mine-clearance device. However, he stresses that this offers protection only to RCD soldiers and that there are growing civilian casualties in the Kabinda region. According to his information, Mbuji-Mayi and environs have also been heavily mined, in particular, there are mines all around the airport. Menga could not confirm the origin of the alleged mines, or whether Congolese government or Zimbabwean forces were responsible for laying them. Although he did not mention the Mine Ban Treaty (to which the DRC is not a signatory), Menga argued that the international community should tell Kabila to stop the use of landmines.(762)
Contacted by Human Rights Watch, the Defense Advisor at the Zimbabwean High Commission in London, Lieutenant-Colonel Ezekiel Zabanyana said, "We do not use landmines in the DRC. This is improper. We are signatories to the Convention and we abide by our commitment to this Convention. This is emphatic." When asked whether this meant that Zimbabwe refrained from the use of all mines, at home and abroad, the Lieutenant-Colonel replied, "No. That is correct."(763) Zimbabwe signed the 1997 Mine Ban Treaty on 3 December 1997 and ratified this on 18 June 1998. The Mine Ban Treaty has now been incorporated into Zimbabwe's domestic law (see report on Zimbabwe).
Representatives of Handicap International have mixed views on the landmine question in DRC. The organization has not detected AP or AT mines at Mbuji-Mayi, despite the RCD's accusations. However, HI representatives have met landmine victims on medical premises in Kinshasa. They were told that the victims "had come from the front," although which front was not specified.(764)
Internationally, suspicions are growing that Zimbabwean or Congolese forces are indeed resorting to the use of landmines. A U.S. State Department analyst told HRW, "When you've got a war to fight, you'll do whatever: I'd certainly use them in [Kabila's] position."(765)
The UK-based Mines Advisory Group initiated a mine awareness program in mid-1996, which concentrated upon displaced Angolans in camps along border of the two countries. However, with renewed heavy fighting between the Angolan government and UNITA, the program was ended in mid-1998.(766)
After some thirty years of conflict, Eritrea, led by the Eritrean People's Liberation Front (EPLF), gained independence from Ethiopia in 1993. Decades of conflict have left a significant landmine problem in Eritrea. The past year has witnessed a conflict between Eritrea and Ethiopia over their border, which was never formally delineated after Eritrean independence. Eritrea in particular has been accused of using mines during the fighting.
Mine Ban Policy
Eritrea has not signed the Mine Ban Treaty. Eritrea was not been actively involved in the Ottawa Process. It attended some of the treaty preparatory meetings, but did not endorse the pro-treaty Brussels Declaration in June 1997 and did not attend the treaty negotiations in Oslo, even as an observer. Eritrea sent representatives to observe the signing ceremony in Ottawa in December 1997. However, Eritrea has expressed some support for banning antipersonnel mines by voting in favor of all three pro-ban U.N. General Assembly resolutions in 1996, 1997, and 1998. Eritrea is not known to have produced or exported antipersonnel mines. Currently, no information is available on the size or composition of Eritrea's stocks of AP mines.
In the late 1998 and 1999 border conflict between Ethiopia and Eritrea, there have been some allegations of use of antipersonnel mines. In February 1999, an Ethiopian government spokesperson accused Eritrea of using as many as 50,000 mines in the Badme region alone, while maintaining that "in the ongoing conflict Ethiopian defense forces have never used antipersonnel landmines."(767) Ethiopia has signed the Mine Ban Treaty. An unnamed but "high ranking" Ethiopian army officer claimed that 110,000 landmines (100,000 AP and 10,000 AT mines) had been planted in Badme and some parts of Sheraro, areas "liberated" from Eritrea during Operation Sunset.(768)
On another front, the Eritrean Islamic Jihad (EIJ), a rebel group active in Eritrea's western lowlands near Sudan, have used antipersonnel mines. Eritrea has accused Sudan of supporting EIJ combatants. EIJ members have planted landmines in western Eritrea that match those provided to Sudanese troops and to Sudan-supported rebels in southern Sudan and Uganda. Human Rights Watch saw two antitank mines, which had already been disarmed and unburied, that were displayed by Eritrean officials who claimed they had been discovered on well-traveled rural roads in 1996, where they could not have been long in place without detonating.(769) Human Rights Watch saw a third landmine of this exact type which had been left on a road that they had just traversed between Tessenei and Barentu in northwestern Eritrea and that was discovered by civilians living in the area when they noticed that the packed dirt road had been disturbed during the night. All three were new Belgian-made plastic landmines of the same design (PRB M-3), with the words "pressure plate" printed on their pressure plates in French, German, and Italian.(770) Each had nearly identical lot numbers, suggesting that they were from the same shipment. In addition to this, Human Rights Watch saw antipersonnel mines of the same type in Eritrea, southern Sudan, and northern Uganda, all carrying similar Arabic markings and all held by Sudanese government forces or supplied to Sudan-backed rebel groups.(771)
In the past, an estimated two million mines were used in Eritrea, between 1975 and 1991, by the armed forces of Ethiopian General Mengistu and the EPLF.(772) Between 500,000 and one million mines are thought to still be in the ground.(773) As of 1994, around fifty different antipersonnel and antitank mines from over fourteen countries had been identified in Eritrea.(774) In addition to mines, an estimated three million unexploded ordnance are thought to litter former conflict areas.(775)
Following are lists of mines found in Eritrea:
Between 1977 and 1994, more than half of the estimated two million mines planted in Eritrea were removed.(778) This calculates into an impressive total of nearly 60,000 mines cleared per year. It is also estimated that in areas that were cleared, 150,000 mines remain due to poor clearance equipment and techniques,(779) a clearance rate of 87 percent, well below humanitarian standards. Eritrean deminers suffered hundreds of casualties during these operations.(780) A more recent estimate puts the total number of landmines, both antipersonnel and antitank, removed since 1991 at 465,000.(781) This again calculates to a high total of over 58,000 mines removed per year.
Over the past five years, Eritrea has mounted a mine clearance program. Although it has relied on U.S. government assistance from the Department of Defense Humanitarian Demining Program through the US Central Command, "the activities are strongly controlled" by the Eritrean government.(782) The government established the National Demining Headquarters in the capital Asmara with a command element, Historical Research Department, and one demining company of around eighty deminers.(783) The government has also established a Demining Training Center to support the program and the US government's Humanitarian Demining assistance program trained 120 deminers in 1996.(784)
As of 1998, this single demining company had cleared 1,235 antipersonnel mines, 126 antitank mines over a total of almost two and one-half square kilometers and eighty-seven kilometers of roads.(785) These totals appear more realistic than the two previous totals given for clearance. In addition to the structured demining, informal demining by civilians goes on as well.(786)
To date, no comprehensive nationwide survey has been conducted in Eritrea. The United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) has identified Eritrea as one of the countries requiring a national survey.(787) A UNMAS assessment mission to Eritrea scheduled for mid-1998 was postponed due to security concerns.(788) Eritrea's reluctance to accept assistance from countries other than the U.S. has limited its ability to expand its mine action program.(789) For its part, the demining authority prioritizes clearance by into three categories: (1) Resettlement areas for refugees; (2) Transportation infrastructure, and (3) General land use.(790) To date, land that has been cleared has been rehabilitated for refugee return, "road building, farming and grazing, utility projects (such as power and telecommunications), mining and drilling, and natural resource exploration.(791)"
Mine awareness is also part of the Eritrean mine action program. The program uses signs and mass media, which was not the case prior to 1995, to inform local populations about the danger in the area.(792) In addition to assistance with clearance, in 1997 the U.S. program has worked with the Historical Research Department on mine awareness.(793)
U.S. assistance to Eritrea for mine action totaled around US$2 million in 1998 and has totaled $8 million since its inception. Funding is projected at US$2.2 million for 1999.(794)
There is little information regarding casualties related to mines in Eritrea. The government reported that between May 1991 and May 1993, 2,000 incidents, including civilians and mine clearance personnel, occurred in Eritrea, but no updated figures have been quoted.(795) A 1998 U.S. report states that mine action has led to a decline in accidents, but offers no concrete statistics to illustrate the decline.(796) One explanation for low casualty figures, though again no figures are given, is the demining authority's prioritization of resettlement areas prior to the return of refugees and displaced people.(797) Again, the lack of a comprehensive survey in Eritrea, which would include victim data, limits accurate calculation of the problem. Health services and subsequent treatment and rehabilitation in the country are "generally inadequate" especially in rural areas, making this a key point for improvement.(798)
Liberia has not yet signed the Mine Ban Treaty. During the Ottawa Process, it attended the Brussels conference and Oslo negotiations as an observer. Liberia also co-sponsored the 1997 UN General Assembly resolution in support of the ban treaty. Liberia is not known to have produced or exported antipersonnel mines, but various armed forces have used mines extensively in the past.
The Republic of Liberia was the first independent republic in Africa and together with Ethiopia, it is one of only two African states which have never been directly colonized. This West African state has experienced political instability since the 1970s and a military coup in 1980 which eventually led to civil war, in which landmines were used. After a dozen prior peace agreements, a new accord was signed in August 1995 in Abuja and a transitional government was sworn in on 1 September. Following multiparty presidential elections in 1997, Charles Taylor, a former rebel leader, became president.
Landmines were used in the nine-year-long civil war in Liberia. Rebel forces mined roads and ECOWAS Ceasefire Monitoring Group (ECOMOG) forces planted minefields around their installations. The U.S. Department of State estimated that approximately 1,000 antitank mines had been used and these killed twenty people in 1993, more than half of them civilians.(799) By July 1993 ECOMOG had uncovered 150 mines laid by rebel forces and had removed mines from the Pipeline road near White Plains, the Barnersville area, the Ria-Scheifflin road and the Caresburg area.(800)
In October 1994, two ECOMOG vehicles were destroyed and three troops killed by antitank mines planted on the Kakata-Bong Mines Road and the Harbal to Buchanan Road by National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) fighters.(801) On 11 October 1995, one civilian was injured in a mine explosion in Buchanan near ECOMOG's Seventh Brigade garrison. The soldiers had laid mines around the base for defensive purposes. Two Senegalese members of ECOMOG were killed in Liberia while laying landmines in 1993.(802) In February 1995, the United Nations Observer Mission in Liberia (UNOMIL) attempted to survey the extent of the landmine problem in Liberia but due to continued fighting in the south-east and north-west found these areas inaccessible.
ECOMOG engaged in mine clearance operations during the conflict along the roads it used. In June 1995 two rival militia agreed to start clearing mines from the Kakata to Bong Mines road. The United Liberation Movement (ULIMO) faction controlled Bong Mines but the NPFL had laid siege to the town for ten months.(803)
There appear to have been no records made by the warring factions of where they laid their mines. UNOMIL conducted a mine survey in March 1995 and located seven minefields with an estimated total 18,250 antitank and antipersonnel mines in them at:
1) Grand Bassa County: LAC road and rubber plantation;
2) Rivercress County: Rivercress area;
3) Lofa County: Voinjama;
4) Lofa County: Foyakamura;
5) Lofa County: Mandekome;
6) Sinoa County: Greenville;
7) Maryland County: Harper.(804)
The United Nations has identified two types of mines in Liberia, both Romanian antitank mines: the MAT 62B and the MAT 76.(805)
Responding to criticism about the stalled peace process in December 1995, warlord Charles Taylor said that, "We have demined and opened up the roads to allow food convoys."(806) In March 1997, the commander of West African peace-keepers in Liberia, General Victor Malu announced that all mines had been cleared and that refugees should come home to vote in the presidential elections in May. He said, "Anybody can now travel in the country without fear of landmines."(807) Malu also said that the last mines were cleared at the Firestone rubber plantation north of the capital.
The Catholic Justice and Peace Commission, an NGO concerned with human rights and humanitarian issues, has expressed its concern as to whether there is a remaining landmine problem but has been unable to verify whether Liberia is now landmine free.(808) The U.S. Department of State in 1998 revised its assessment and declared Liberia mine-free.(809)
Despite its support for the 1996 UN General Assembly resolution urging the vigorous pursuit of an international agreement banning antipersonnel mines, and its support for the 1998 UNGA resolution urging universalization and ratification of the 1997 Mine Ban Treaty, the Federal Republic of Nigeria has still not yet not signed the ban treaty. Nigeria participated as an observer in some, but not all, meetings of the Ottawa Process.
Nigeria is not known to have produced or exported antipersonnel mines. Nigeria procured its antipersonnel mines from Yugoslavia, Russia and Czechoslovakia. According to the U.S. Department of Defense, Nigeria's stockpile of mines also includes MIAPID48 antipersonnel mines from France and Ranger AP mines from Britain.(810)
Landmines were laid during the Biafran War (1967 to 1970). In 1993, the US State Department reported that "all minefields laid during the Biafran war are reported cleared."(811) In the 1990s, the Nigerian-led Economic Community of West African States (ECOMOG) forces used landmines in Liberia and Sierra Leone (see these country entries). According to the Nigerian press, eleven Nigerian ECOMOG soldiers were killed in a landmine explosion in Sierra Leone in September 1997.(812) There is no information on more recent use of landmines by Nigeria. A senior military official stated that Nigeria might use landmines as a weapon of last resort, such as in the border skirmishes with Cameroonian gendarmes in the disputed oil-rich Bakassi Peninsula.(813)
The Biafran war claimed a number of landmine victims, although their numbers have never been established.(814) Many of these are destitute and a number housed at the Oji Rehabilitation Centre in Engu State. These survivors are a common sight near the Centre begging for alms on the side of the Engu Expressway. There continue to be a small number of new victims from UXOs and possibly landmines left over from the Biafran war. The Nigerian press usually does not define what caused an explosion, calling them "bombs."(815)
Somalia has been without a central government since the fall of the regime of Siyad Barre in 1991. Opposing factions or warlords have carved up most of Somalia's 637,700 square kilometers into fiefdoms loosely controlled by armed militia. In 1991, the Somali National Movement, one of the factions that fought for the overthrow of the Siyad Barre dictatorship, proclaimed an independent Somaliland in the five northern regions that constituted territorially the former British Protectorate of Somaliland. In 1998, the Somali Salvation Democratic Front (SSDF) established an autonomous regional administration, Puntland, in the northeastern section of Somalia. Somaliland and Puntland enjoy relative stability compared to the rest of Somalia. Information on the landmine situation in the self-declared Republic of Somaliland can be found in a separate report.
Mine Ban Policy
Somalia remains without a central government. Two faction leaders, Ali Mahdi and Hussein Aideed, have at various times claimed to have constituted central reconciliation governments in Mogadishu, the capital of the former Democratic Republic of Somalia (SDR), but their claims have been contested by many of the more than twenty other factions. In 1997, Ali Mahdi and Hussein Aideed began organizing a joint administration for Mogadishu and the Benadir region.(816) This joint administration, which is also contested by other Benadir- and Mogadishu-based factions, has not issued any statements on landmines.
On 20 August 1998, the Somali Patriotic Movement (SPM), which operates in the lower Juba River region released a statement to the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL) affirming that the SPM would unilaterally observe the Mine Ban Treaty. (817) The Puntland State of Somalia (NE Regions) issued a landmine policy statement in January 1999 that included support for the Mine Ban Treaty.(818) In June 1997 the USC/SNA, the main faction in central and southwest regions of the country issued a letter of intent to support the Mine Ban Treaty but it has been silent since.(819)
Concerned Somali citizens residing outside of Somalia operate anti-landmine NGOs. These NGOs include the Somali Canadian Society in Toronto(820) and the Somali Campaign to Ban Landmines, which originally operated from Nairobi and is now based in the Netherlands.(821)
Production, Transfer and Stockpiling
Somalia is not known to have produced or exported antipersonnel mines. There have been allegations of recent small arms shipments to factions operating inside Somalia,(822) but whether landmine stocks were included in these shipments is not known. All militia and factions in Somalia are thought to have landmine stocks. Antipersonnel mines from twenty-four countries, the majority from Czechoslovakia, Russia, Pakistan and Belgium have been identified in Somalia.(823)
Landmines were first used in Somalia during the 1977-78 war between the regimes of Mohamed Siyad Barre in Somalia and Mengistu Haile Mariam of Ethiopia. Mines were heavily employed during this war. Between 1981 and 1991, Somali opposition militia fought to overthrow the Siyad Barre dictatorship. These militia operated from the Ethiopian side of the border; consequently the Somali army used landmines extensively along the border. Almost 70 percent of all landmines in Somalia are estimated to lie within seventy to ninety-six minefields along the border with Ethiopia.(824)
Between 1988 and 1991, the Somali National Movement (SNM) attacked the northern towns of Hargeisa and Burao and the surrounding countryside--which are part of Somaliland. UNDP estimates that between 400,000 and 800,000 mines were used in this period.(825) One hundred thousand landmines were reported to have been used in Hargeisa alone.(826) The Somali National Movement also used mines during this period, largely along bridges and access roads to military installations.(827) (See report on Somaliland.)
Landmine use continued after the fall of Siyad Barre by all factions vying for power in Somalia. In 1992, a 5-kilometer section of the Bur Dhubo-Qandhadere road was mined, and mines were heavily used in Kismayo, the Juba River valley and along the Shebelle River near Beled Weyn.(828) An area between Galkayo, Dusa Mareb and the coastal town of Obbia is also mined.(829)
Factional and inter-clan wars continue in much of southern Somalia. The Rahanweyn Resistance Army and the Digil Salvation Army continue their efforts to oust Hussein Aideed's militia from the Baidoa region. An Islamic fundamentalist group, Al Ittihad, opposed to Ethiopian influence, is also active in the Luq-Bardheere area. Although direct evidence that landmines are being used is not available, all of these groups have used landmines in the past. In addition, recent reports indicate that at least three nations, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Libya, all non-MBT ratifiers, have recently supplied the various warring factions with large amounts of small arms(830).
In the Lower Juba region, two factions, those of General Mohamed Said Hersi (Morgan) and General Aden Gabyo, have been engaged in a protracted war over the port city of Kismayo. General Gabyo(831) and General Morgan have been accused by many human rights organizations of atrocities committed during the 1988-91 civil war in northern Somalia.(832) General Gabyo was then Siyad Barre's Defense Minister and General Morgan commanded the 26th Division of the Somali Army fighting in the Hargeisa region. General Morgan's division used landmines as weapons of terror in this civil war. General Gabyo has now signed on behalf of the SPM a letter pledging non-use of landmines.
Nearly three decades of warfare have left Somalia with a serious landmine problem..(833) Both the United Nations and the U.S. State Department recently have revised downward the estimate of the number of landmines in Somali soil from between 1.5-2 million in 1994 to one million in 1998.(834) The majority of landmines are in Somaliland (see separate section for Somaliland).
There are more than 100 suspected minefields along the border between Somalia and Ethiopia, most of which are in pasture areas toward the Somaliland border with Ethiopia.(835) Central and southern areas of Somalia are less heavily contaminated.(836) Minefields are, however, found in Beled Weyne, Bardhere, Luq, the port city of Kismayo and in the Juba River Valley,(837) and in the Galkayo-Dusa-Mareb-and coastal Obbia triangle.(838)
Somalia has also been contaminated with large amounts of UXO. Discarded UXO pieces ranging from unexploded mortars and bombs to surface-to-air missiles are found throughout Somalia, particularly at former military bases and at major airports.
All demining in Somalia ceased with the departure of the UN Operations in Somalia (UNOSOM) in March 1995. Prior to UNOSOM'S departure, eleven local commercial contractors and 200 deminers are reported to have cleared 127 square kilometers of land and 438 kilometers of road and of removing 32,511 landmines and 72,741 pieces of UXO.(839) (Most of the landmines were removed by Rimfire, a commercial firm working in Hargeisa, which is now the capital of Somaliland.) Security concerns severely limit mine action programs in most of Somalia and except for projects in Somaliland, no demining is currently underway. No systematic surveys have been conducted in Somalia.
In 1993, the UN launched a mine awareness campaign in schools to teach children landmine safety. The campaign also printed posters and pamphlets and produced two plays that were performed mainly in northern Somalia.(840) This campaign ended with the departure of UNOSOM.
Data on landmine accidents or casualties is no longer kept systematically in Somalia. The U.S. State Department reports that there are no current victim assistance programs in Somalia.(841)
Soon after the fall of the of the Siyad Barre regime of the Somali Democratic Republic in 1991, Somaliland, which comprised the northern five regions of united Somalia, proclaimed its independence, claiming the same territory that was ruled by the United Kingdom as the British Protectorate of Somaliland until 1960. Somaliland had joined with the former Italian colony of Somalia after each received independence in 1960. Today, for all practical purposes, Somaliland functions as a separate and independent country, thus far unrecognized by other countries. It has a bicameral parliament, and an elected president. Twice in the past eight years, Somaliland has peacefully changed its governing leadership. It maintains officially recognized liaison offices in neighboring countries such as Djibouti and Ethiopia and will soon open a Commercial Relations Office in Yemen.
Mine Ban Policy
The self-declared Republic of Somaliland cannot become a signatory of the Mine Ban Treaty until it receives international recognition as a separate state. Nevertheless, on the occasion of the signing ceremony of the ban treaty in Ottawa, the President of Somaliland, Mohamed Ibrahim Egal, wrote a letter to Lloyd Axworthy, the Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs indicating that Somaliland was willing to sign the MBT. In his letter, Mr. Egal stated "We would be grateful to be accepted as participants in the Conference and to sign the treaty banning landmines as an autonomous territory in full control of its destiny and the management of its affairs." (842) Somaliland authorities give every indication that they are willing to unilaterally observe the MBT and all of its obligations, including the expeditious destruction of landmine stocks of its national army.
The governmental National Demining Agency (NDA) issued a policy paper on landmines in 1998. Its proposed policies were approved by the President's Cabinet on 26 October 1998. However, the policy did not mention the MBT, and although it mandated the destruction of landmine stocks, it only made reference to landmine stocks in the hands of militias or private individuals and did not mention national army landmine stocks.(843) On 1 March 1999, the Somaliland House of Representatives passed an amended version of the NDA policy that in Article 1 decrees that "the State Shall undertake to destroy or ensure the destruction of all stockpiled antipersonnel mines it owns or possesses, or that are under its jurisdiction or control, as soon as possible."(844)
In its preamble to the amended policy, the House of Representatives recalled both the Ottawa Declaration of 5 October 1996 and the Brussels Declaration of 27 June 1997 urging the international community to negotiate an international legally binding agreement prohibiting the use, stockpiling, production and transfer of antipersonnel mines.
Until recently there was no organized campaign to ban landmines in Somaliland.(845) On 26 August 1998 SOYAAL, the Somaliland Veterans Association, issued a statement at the conclusion of its Second General Congress calling on the government of Somaliland to ban all landmines.(846) Subsequently, in January 1999 the Somaliland Coalition against Landmines (SCAL) was formed, composed of SOYAAL, the Somaliland Red Crescent Society, the Somaliland Relief and Rehabilitation Association (SORRA), and the Institute for Practical Research (IPR). IPR acts as the secretariat for SCAL.(847)
Production, Transfer and Stockpiling
Somaliland is not known to have ever produced or exported antipersonnel mines. The Ministry of Defense of Somaliland states that its national army has not purchased or transferred any landmines, but admits that it has stocks inherited from the Somali army or various demobilized militias.(848) The government has not programmed the destruction of its landmine stocks.(849) The size and composition of the stockpile is not known.
The landmine problem in Somaliland is the result of over two decades of warfare. Between 1977 and 1978, the Somali Democratic Republic, which then had the third largest army in sub-Saharan Africa, went to war with neighboring Ethiopia over a long-standing territorial dispute. The war was heavily contested in the frontier area between northern Somalia (now Somaliland) and Ethiopia and the corridor between the Ethiopian city of Dire-Dawa and the border. Both the Somali army of Maj. Gen. Mohamed Siyad Barre and Ethiopian troops of the Mengistu regime heavily mined front lines, perimeters surrounding military installations and important access routes.
Then, between 1981 and 1991, the Somali National Movement (SNM), a rebel army of mostly northern Somali following, waged an armed insurrection against the regime of Mohamed Siyad Barre. On 27 May 1988, the conflict intensified to a full-scale war, and the Somali army, fearing that the population was sympathetic to the cause of the rebels, embarked on a scorched earth strategy. Nearly one million civilians were forced out of northern Somalia into refugee camps in northeastern Ethiopia.(850) Numerous reports by human rights organizations and others describe the indiscriminate use of landmines by the Somali army against the civilian population and their homes, farmland, and water reservoirs.(851) In particular, the then regional capital of Hargeisa was targeted by the army. Perhaps as many as 100,000 landmines were placed in Hargeisa by the army -- around military bases, refugee camps, private homes, and the airport.(852) SNM combatants also used landmines during this civil war.
The most recent use of landmines in Somaliland took place between 1994 and 1995. Militias opposed to the regime of Somaliland President Mohamed Ibrahim Egal and loyalist forces fought fierce battles in Hargeisa (now Somaliland's capital) and areas south and east of Hargeisa.
Landmines were used extensively in this civil war. While the two sides have now reconciled, the landmines they planted during this period are making life very difficult in Burao and the surrounding region
Most studies put the number of landmines in Somaliland and Somalia from these three conflicts at 1.2 to 2 million. In 1998 the US State Department estimated one million landmines in all of Somalia.(853) The United Nations Development Program (UNDP), which currently operates the Somali Civil Protection Program and a demining project in Somaliland, indicates that between 400,000 and 800,000 landmines were deployed in Somaliland during the 1988-1991 period.(854) At least twenty-four types of antipersonnel landmines from ten countries have been identified in Somaliland. The ten countries of origin are: Belgium, Pakistan, China, the United States, former Czechoslovakia, former East Germany, Egypt, former Soviet Union, United Kingdom and Italy.(855)
In 1997, the Somaliland government constituted a National Demining Agency (NDA) to coordinate all demining, mine awareness and victim assistance programs by the government and national and international NGOs. At about the same time, UNDP established a Somali Mine Action Center (SMAC) to coordinate its landmine activities in Somaliland and begin a limited training and demining program in Burao City. The UNDP program also started compiling field data for a level 1 survey. Data on the extent of landmine contamination throughout Somaliland has been compiled by SMAC, SOYAAL (the Somaliland War Veterans Association) and the Somali Relief and Rehabilitation Association (SORRA).
According to SMAC, there are twenty-eight mined roads in Somaliland. Most roads in Somaliland are unpaved; the only exception is one major route that connects several of the major towns and cities. Consequently, it had been relatively easy to block roads with landmines. There have been several mine incidents on the coastal road between the port city of Berbera and neighboring Djibouti, and a section of this road just east of Berbera has at least one minefield of undetermined size. Sections of the regular Djibouti-Jidhi-Borama road are also mined and traffic has been diverted into alternate routes for the past eight years. The regular unpaved road between the largest towns of Somaliland, Burao and Hargeisa, has been abandoned, in part due to the landmine threat.
There are also more than eighty minefields in Somaliland. Sixty-three of these fields have been confirmed by SMAC. The majority of mine fields are found near the Ethiopian/Somaliland border.(856) These minefields were designed to protect the army of Siyad Barre's regime from SNM incursions during the 1988-90 conflict. Somaliland is a pastoral society and the frontier area is the most important grazing area for Somaliland livestock. Each season, tens of thousands of nomads and their herds cross the border in search of water and pasture. These nomads are extremely vulnerable as they travel on foot and often in large numbers. There are no paved roads in the area and no hospitals or health care centers. No systematic demining has taken place in this frontier area.
The city of Burao is also badly mine affected, and the source of most new mine victims in Somaliland today. More than 70,000 former residents of Burao, Somaliland's second largest city, have not dared return home and live in a makeshift camp on its eastern outskirts.(857) Limited demining by a UNDP-funded Somalia Civil Protection Project has now resulted in some sections of the city to be repopulated and the reopening of important public facilities such as the airport, the bank, a few schools and a number of main streets.
Mine Action Funding
Somaliland's status as a self-declared republic that has received no international recognition has made it very difficult to attract bilateral assistance or funding from the international community for demining or other mine action projects. Lack of resources has severely limited demining and mine action activities and currently only one UNDP-sponsored demining project of a limited duration is active in Somaliland.
Between 1991 and 1993, the US State Department and later the United Nations funded a commercial demining project in Somaliland. The United Nations Operations in Somalia (UNOSOM) which operated during the 1992-1994 humanitarian intervention in Somalia funded a number of local contractors. It is not clear that any of these contractors worked in Somaliland.
In 1998, the UNDP spent $202,000 on a training and assessment project by Mine-Tech of Zimbabwe (see below). In 1998, Care International received $343,817 from the US Department of State's Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration to start a level II survey in Somaliland and to support NDA and SMAC capacity building.(858) Care's project was slated to start on 1 March 1999.
On 20 January 1999, the Danish Foreign Ministry awarded 4 million Kroner (approximately U.S. $600,000) to the Danish Demining Group to start a project in Somaliland in the spring of 1999.(859) During a meeting on 5 March 1998 in Copenhagen, DGG indicated that the funds were for a pilot project that may be expanded in the future.(860)
The gravity of the landmine situation became apparent in 1991 soon after the fall of Siyad Barre as large numbers of residents returned to their homes in Hargeisa. Mines were found everywhere in Hargeisa and casualties quickly mounted. In 1991, the U.S. State Department's Office of Refugee Programs funded a proposal by Médecins Sans Frontières of Belgium to start a demining program in Hargeisa. The project was later expanded with further input from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). UNHCR was responsible for the care of nearly 800,000 former residents of Somaliland as refugees in northeastern Ethiopia.
Rimfire, a British firm, was contracted to start demining in and around the city of Hargeisa. According to some reports, Rimfire's demining program had serious organizational and technical shortcomings and some indicated that more than thirty of its local deminers were killed.(861) The program and parallel local efforts resulted in the removal of 21,000 from Hargeisa before Rimfire closed its project in early 1994.(862) The early demining by local teams(863) and Rimfire enabled the re-population of the city of Hargeisa, whose residents now number an estimated population of 250,000 to 300,000. Mine explosions are now rare in Hargeisa. However, there are a number of minefields in its vicinity.
The 1994-95 internal conflict in Somaliland, described above, made humanitarian demining difficult, and no new programs were initiated. In fact, new mines were laid in the contested areas, and, as noted, most severely affected by these new mines is the central city of Burao, which had been the scene of heavy fighting.
In 1998, UNDP funded a three-month commercial demining project to begin the demining of Burao. MineTech of Zimbabwe was contracted to do a feasibility study using previously trained Somali deminers. MineTech trained sixty-three Somali deminers, and with two mine detection dogs and expatriate technical advisors has now cleared approximately 73,000 sq. meters in Burao removing 107 antipersonnel mines, fifteen antitank mines and sixty-three UXOs at a cost of $2.75 per square meter and a total cost of US $202,000. Under a separate contract from HABITAT, the team also cleared a 1.5 km road leading to the water reservoir of the nearby town of Sheikh.
On 20 January 1999, the Danish Demining Group (DGG) announced that it would begin a demining project in Somaliland in the spring of 1999. DGG received a grant of 4 million Kroner from the Danish Foreign Ministry for a demining, detonation of UXOs and victim assistance. According to press reports DGG will establish headquarters in Hargeisa and will train up to forty-five local deminers.(864)
Landmine Survivor Assistance
In 1991. during the peak of landmine incidents, Somaliland had only eight general surgeons and two orthopedic surgeons in the whole country. At that time, the ICRC estimated Somaliland to have one amputee for every 652 persons. Physicians for Human Rights (PHR), in a report published in 1992, also conservatively estimated that there were then between 1,500 and 2,000 landmine amputees in Somaliland. The population of Somaliland at the time of the PHR report was estimated at about 1 million, indicating, therefore, that there was one amputee for every 666 residents. In this period, 60 mine victims a month were being brought to the main Hargeisa Group Hospital alone.(865) There are only three hospitals capable of providing surgery in the whole county, and these are poorly equipped.
Mine-related casualties have considerably subsided over the past several years as people become more aware and avoid problem zones. Moreover, nomads and local communities especially in the frontier areas have often hired freelance deminers to demine areas they knew had landmines. In April 1998, doctors in Berbera Hospital indicated that on average they were treating one new mine victim each month. Most of the victims in Berbera were from the heavily-mined city of Burao, which is about two hours driving distance from Berbera.(866) However, the United Nations reports that between June and December 1998, there were seventy landmine accidents involving forty fatalities in the Togdheer region of Somaliland alone.(867)
Currently two NGOs provide some post-operative assistance to landmine victims. The Somaliland Red Crescent Society (SRCS), with funding from the Somaliland government., and the Norwegian Red Cross provides plastic lower limb prostheses to amputees. Handicap International (HI) also provides prosthetics, crutches and other walking aids, and runs a physical therapy clinic for amputees and other handicapped individuals. Both centers are located in Hargeisa and except for occasional travel to other districts, their patients are confined to victims who can seek assistance in Hargeisa.
Between 1993 and December 1998 the SRCS rehabilitation center provided prostheses to 908 patients. Forty percent of the patients were mine victims. The majority of mine victims do not receive any post-operative assistance. The need for post-operative care was illustrated in October 1998 when SRCS staff visited Burao. In a single day, the SCRS team saw sixty amputees who needed help with obtaining mobility devices.(868) The SCRS now plans seven mobile clinics, four for the Togdheer region and three for Awadal during 1999.(869)
721. Weekly Post , (Lusaka), 29 November - 5 December 1991.
722. Muleya Mwanayanda, "Field Notes," no date, on file at Afronet, Lusaka.
723. Times of Zambia , (Lusaka), January 28, 1999.
724. Interview, M. Zounguere-Sokambi, Ambassador of the Central African Republic, in Brussels, 26 February 1999.
725. Interview, Ahmed Rajab, editor, Africa Analysis , London, 25 March 1999.
726. Interview, defence analyst, Centre d'Analyse et Prévision, Paris, 29 March 1999.
727. 0Telephone interview, Ali Msaidie, chief government spokesperson, Islamic Federal Republic of Comoros, Moroni, 1 April 1999.
728. 0Interview, French security officer, Paris, 29 March 1999.
729. 0Comoran journalist, interviewed by Ahmed Rajab, London, 1 April 1999. See also "Comoros: The 'dinosaurs' carp at recovery," Africa Analysis , (London), no. 318, 19 March 1999, p.4.
730. Telephone interview, U.S. diplomat, Brazzaville, 25 March 1999.
731. 0Telephone interviews, political and military strategists, London, Paris, and Kinshasa, 25-31 March 1999.
732. 0Telephone interview, defence analyst, Centre d'Analyse et Prévision, Paris, 29 March 1999.
733. 0Congo: finding landmines proves tougher than laying them," Inter Press Service , 22 August 1998.
734. 0Telephone interview, Remy Bazenguissa, Paris, 31 March 1999. Bazenguissa is the foremost analyst of the various recent battles for Brazzaville and surroundings.
735. 0France warns against the use of landmines in Congo," Agence France Presse , 11 September 1997.
736. 0Telephone interviews, U.S. and European diplomatic representatives, Brazzaville and Kinshasa, 26 March 1999.
737. 0Telephone interview with Remy Bazenguissa, 31 March 1999.
738. 0Gary Jones, "£40m list of death", the Mirror , (London), 8 March 1999, pp.4-5.
739. 0Look in The Mirror ", Africa Confidential , vol. 40, no. 6, 19 March 1999, p.8.
740. 0Telephone interviews, representatives of exiled President Pascal Lissouba, London, 31 March 1999.
741. 0Daniel Mouellet, chargé d'affaires, Embassy of the Republic of Congo, Washington D.C., Letter to Stephen Goose, Program Director, Human Rights Watch Arms Project, 11 April 1996, Letter number 0568/ARC/WDC.
742. 0The list includes "50 training mines .Mon 50", "50 mines .Mon 50," "all accessories for Mon 100 like electrical wires-detonators-cord", "blasting cap-pull fuze-foxhole," "50 anti-pers training mines PMN," and "50 Anti-tank training mines TM-46." The relevant part of the list was supplied to Human Rights Watch by the Mirror on 1 April 1999. In the Mirror 's story, Lissouba's representatives were linked to Labayfar, a well-known Belgian equipment supplier, which Mirror journalist Gary Jones alleges was potentially prepared to act as the clearing house for weapons of predominantly Russian origin. Contacted by Human Rights Watch in Brussels (telephone interview, 31 March 1999) Labayfar's chairman, André Lafosse replied "certainly not" to a request for clarification on the nature and provenance of the shopping list.
743. 0 Inter Press Service , 22 August 1998.
746. 0Telephone interview with unnamed Brazzaville resident, 25 March 1999.
747. Michaela Wrong, "Neighboring states take sides in Congo conflict", Financial Times, (London), 19 August 1998; James Walker "Congo on the edge as Kabila falters," Independent, (London), 16 August 1998.
748. "Africa scrambles for Africa," Africa Confidential (London), vol. 40, no. I, 8 January 1999, pp.1-6.
749. Interview, French defense specialist, Centre d'analyse et de prévision, Paris, 29 March 1999.
750. Human Rights Watch, Rwanda/Zaire. Rearming with Impunity. International Support for the Perpetrators of the Rwandan Genocide , Human Rights Watch Short Report, vol. 7, no. 4, May 1995, p.11
751. UN Country Database, DR Congo report, http://www.un.org/Depts/Landmine/ country/congodem.htm
752. ICRC website, www.icrc.org, search request, "zaire."
754. Reuters , at ICRC website.
755. "Paid fighters - and Their Paymasters," Africa Confidential , vol. 38, no. xiii, 20 June 1997.
756. "Congo accused of laying anti-personnel mines," ChannelAfrica (South Africa) radio report, 14 October 1998.
757. "Mines Return to Angola," Expresso (Lisbon: internet version), 2 October 1998.
758. Telephone interview with unnamed military source, 30 March 1999.
759. Namibia, Ministry of Defense, Media release, "NDF members wounded in the DRC," 26 November 1998.
760. Herald , Harare, 21 December 1998.
761. Telephone interview, Brussels, 19 March 1999.
763. Telephone interview, London, 19 March, 1999.
764. Email communication to Human Rights Watch from Handicap International representatives, Democratic Republic of Congo, 26 March 1999.
765. Interview with unnamed U.S. State Department official, 24 March 1999.
766. Telephone interviews, Tim Carstairs and Helen Keary, Mines Advisory Group, UK, 30 March 1999.
767. Ethiopian Government Spokesperson, "Total Victory for Operation Sunset," Ethiopian News Service , Addis Ababa. www.telecom.net.et/~ena, 28 February 1999; Professor Addis Birhan, "Mind Eritrea's Mine Fields," Walta Information Service , Addis Ababa. www.telecom.net.et/~walta, 6 March 1999; Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 17 March 1999, p. 2.
768. The Weyne newspaper quoted in "Ethiopian Officer Says Eritrea Plants Mines," AB2703144099, Mekele Voice of the Tigray Revolution in Tigrinya, 1500 GMT, 26 March 1999.
769. Sudan. Global Trade, Local Impact: Arms Transfers to all Sides in the Civil War in Sudan , Human Rights Watch Short Report, vol.10, no.4 (A), August 1998, p.42.
772. 0Carolyn Taylor et al, Landmine Warfare- Mines and engineer munitions in Eritrea. National Ground Intelligence Center. No. NGIC-116-004-94, 1994, p. 5.
773. 0Taylor et al, Landmine Warfare , p.1; U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers, September 1998, p.25; UNA-USA, "A Report on Landmine Clearance in Africa," The Eighth Annual Citizen's Inspection Tour, April 25-May 2, 1998, p.20.
774. 0Taylor, et al., Landmine Warfare, pp.11-12; U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers, July 1993, p.86.
775. 0U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , 1998, p. 25.
778. 0Taylor et al., Landmine Warfare , p.1.
780. 0U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , 1994, p.16.
781. 0U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , 1998, p. 28.
782. 0UNA-USA, p. 21.
783. 0U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , 1998, p. 27.
786. 0UNA-USA, p. 21.
787. 0"UNMAS Discussion Paper on the Application of Survey and the Impact of the Ottawa Treaty," UNMAS, New York, Version 1.2/98, Annex C.
788. 0"Ethiopia Joint Assessment Mission Report," UNMAS, 22 June, 1998, p.1.
789. 0UNA-USA, p.22.
790. 0U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killer s, 1998, p. 28.
792. 0Taylor et al., Landmine Warfare , p.4; U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers, 1998, p. 28.
793. 0U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , 1998, p. 29.
794. 0U.S. State Department, "Demining Program Financing History," 11 January 1999.
795. 0Taylor et al., Landmine Warfare , p.4; U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , 1998,. p. 27.
796. 0U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , 1998, p. 28.
797. 0UNA-USA, p. 21.
798. 0U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , 1998, p. 29.
799. U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , December 1994, p.16.
800. U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , July 1993, p. 117.
801. Liberia Country Report, UN Country Database, www.un.org/Depts/Landmine/ country/liberia.htm.
802. Barbarcar Diagne and Alex Vines, 'Senegal: Old Mines, New Wars,' African Topics , no.22, January-March 1998.
803. Liberia Country Report, UN Country Database.
806. AFP , 12 December 1995.
807. Reuters, 26 March 1997.
808. Interview with Kofi Woods, Former National Director, JPC, The Hague, 29 March 1999.
809. U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers, September 1998, p.A-2.
810. U.S. Department of Defense, "Mine Facts ", CD Rom.
811. US Department of State, Hidden Killers , July 1993, p. 133.
812. Nigerian Tribune , (Lagos), 3 August 1997.The Director of Defence Information, Colonel Godwin Ugbo, who confirmed the deaths said the eleven were among sixteen soldiers who had died from "various ailments and accidents."
813. Lt. Col., Defence Headquarters, Lagos, January 1999.
814. Vanguard , (Lagos), 6 July 1987.
815. Punch , (Lagos), 20 June, 1987; New Nigerian , 3 August 1997.
816. In 1998, at the urging of Egypt and Libya, Ali Mahdi and Hussein Aideed established a joint administration for Mogadishu including a joint police force. Osman Ali Atto and several other faction leaders are in strong opposition and factional fighting took place as recently as 14 March 1999.
817. The SPM letter to the ICBL is currently with the Non-State Actors Working Group.
818. "Puntland State Policy and Landmines," Press Release, Garoe, Puntland, Somalia, 15 January 1999; "Fact sheet of Landmines in Puntland," Garoe, Puntland, 15 January 1999.
819. Letter sent to Belgian Embassy in Nairobi by Aideed administration from Mogadishu during the Global Ban of Landmines Conference held in Brussels in June 1997.
820. The Somali Canadian Society, 2020 Don Mills Rd # 705, North York, Ontario, Canada, Fax 416 252-4474.
821. Somali Campaign to Ban Landmines, c/o Groes 34, Eersel 5521 LX, The Netherlands.
822. AFP , Horn Region Schedule, 15 February 1999, 7:44.
823. The most common mines are: PRB M35 (Belgium); NMH2 (China); T-72a (China); PP-MI-SR (Czechoslovakia); PP-MI-SR-II (Czechoslovakia); T-72b (China); P2 mk2 (Pakistan); P4 Mk1 (Pakistan); PMD-6 (Russia); PMD-6M (Russia); PMN (Russia); POMZ-2 (Russia), POMZ-2M (Russia); MON-50 (Russia).
824. U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , September 1998, p.46.
825. UNDP Somalia promotional document entitled "UNDP SOMALIA," UNDP Somalia Information Office, Nairobi, Kenya, 1998.
826. Somalia Handbook: Foreign Ground Weapons and Health Issues , U.S. Army Foreign Science and Technology Center, December 1992, DST-1100H-107-92, p.8.
827. Interviews with SNM commanders.
828. UN Database, Country Report: Somalia, www.un.org/Depts/Landmine/ Country/Somalia.html
829. Hidden Killers , 1998, p.46.
830. AFP , Horn region schedule, 7:44, 15 February 1999.
831. General Gabyo's visa to Sweden was recently revoked after allegations of war crimes came to light. In 1997, after the discovery of mass graves near Hargeisa, a War Crimes Commission was appointed in Somaliland to investigate atrocities committed during 1988-1991. Commission members indicate that they have direct evidence of General Gabyo's involvement in war crimes when he was Minister of Defense.
832. Africa Watch (now human Rights Watch)and Amnesty International have written several reports on this period.
833. Somalia Handbook , p.8.
834. Hidden Killers, 1998, pp. 44-48. In the 1994 edition, the estimate was 1.5 million.
835. Data compiled from the Somali Mine Action Center in Hargeisa, October 1998.
836. African Rights and Mines Advisory Group, Violent Deeds Live On: Landmines in Somalia and Somaliland (London: African Rights and MAG, December 1993).
837. UN Database, Country Report: Somalia.
838. Hidden Killers , 1998, p.46.
839. Ibid., p.47.
841. Hidden Killers , 1998, p. 48.
842. Letter dated 26 November 1997 from Somaliland President Mohamed Ibrahim Egal to Canadian Foreign Minister Lloyd Axworthy concerning Somaliland's willingness to sign the Mine Ban Treaty.
843. National Demining Agency, "Somaliland Government Policy on Landmines and Unexploded Ordnance," 26 October 1998.
844. Golaha Wakiilada (House of Representatives), reference GW/KF-7/89/99, 1 March 1999.
845. The Somali Relief and Rehabilitation Association (SORRA) has been the most active. It hosted the Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) team that wrote the 1992 report on landmines in Northern Somalia. The Deputy Speaker of the Somaliland House of Representatives, himself an explosives engineer, has also been an active anti-landmines advocate.
846. SOYAAL Second Congress Resolutions, 26 August 1998.
847. SCAL: 252-213-4585, e-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org
848. Discussion with Rashid Haji Abdillahi, Somaliland Minister of Defense, 20 January 1999.
849. Interview with Col. Mohamed Ali Ismail (ret), Director of NDA, 26 November 1998.
850. United States General Accounting Office, "Somalia, Observations Regarding the Northern Conflict and Resulting Conditions, Report to Congressional Requesters," GAO/NSIAD-89-159, Washington, DC., 1989.
851. Physicians for Human Rights, Hidden Enemies: Landmines in Northern Somalia (Boston: PHR,1992).
852. Somalia Handbook: Foreign Ground Weapons and Health Issues , U.S. Army Foreign Science and Technology Center, December 1992, DST-1100H-107-92, p.8.
853. U.S. Department of State, Hidden Killers , September 1998, p.46.
854. UNDP Promotional Document, "UNDP SOMALIA.," UNDP-Somalia Information Office, Nairobi, Kenya, 1998.
855. Human Rights Watch and Physicians for Human Rights, Landmines: A Deadly Legacy , (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1993), p. 225. This gives the types of mines for each nation.
856. Human Rights Watch, Arms Project and Physicians for Human Rights, Landmines: A Deadly Legacy , (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1993), p. 223.
857. U.N. Assessment Mission to Northwest Somalia, June 1998.
858. Somalia Mine Action Program (SOMAP), Care International, October 1998.
859. DGG is a humanitarian demining NGO affiliated with the Danish Refugees Council.
860. LM researcher met with the Danish Refugee Council and DGG on 5 March 1998.
861. Rimfire was faulted for hiring practices that exacerbated inter-clan friction, not disposing of landmines properly and for failing to follow safety guidelines. African Rights and the Mines Advisory Group wrote a critical report on Rimfire's work, Violent Deeds Live On: Landmines in Somalia and Somaliland (London: African Rights and MAG, December 1993). In addition, a UN Assessment Mission to Northwest Somalia in June of 1998 reported that thirty local deminers were killed during Rimfire's project.
862. Physicians for Human Rights, Hidden Enemies, pp.32-33.
863. A.A. Haij Gam-Gam and H. Wilson, "An outline of a Proposal for the Establishment of a Landmine Clearance Program in the Republic of Somaliland," May 1994.
864. Berlingske Tidende , (Copenhagen), 20 January 1999.
865. Landmines: A Deadly Legacy , pp. 221-223.
866. Discussion at Berbera between doctors working for the Coperazione Italiano (COOPI) and a visiting delegation lead by U.S. Ambassador to Djibouti, Lange Schermerhorn, April 1998.
867. UN Assessment Mission to Northwest Somalia, June 1988.
868. Ali Sheikh Mohamed, Director of SRCS Rehabilitation Center in Hargeisa, 27 November 1998.
869. Mustafa Rashaad, SRCS, Hargeisa, 18 February 1999.