Adopted on 13 July 1999, this Convention had not entered into force on 1 January 2002. AHG/Dec. 132 (XXXV). Available at www.iss.org.za
The member states of the Organization of African Unity:
Considering the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the Organization of African Unity, in particular its clauses relating to the security, stability, development of friendly relations and cooperation among its member states;
Recalling the provisions of the Declaration on the Code of Conduct for Inter-African Relations, adopted by the Thirtieth Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the Organization of African Unity, held in Tunis, Tunisia, from 13 - 15 June 1994;
Aware of the need to promote human and moral values based on tolerance and rejection of all forms of terrorism irrespective of their motivations;
Believing in the principles of international law, the provisions of the Charters of the Organization of African Unity and of the United Nations and the latter’s relevant resolutions on measures aimed at combating international terrorism and, in particular, Resolution 49/60 of the General Assembly of 9 December 1994 together with the annexed Declaration on Measures to Eliminate International Terrorism as well as Resolution 51/210 of the General Assembly of 17 December 1996 and the Declaration to Supplement the 1994 Declaration on Measures to Eliminate International Terrorism, annexed thereto;
Deeply concerned over the scope and seriousness of the phenomenon of terrorism and the dangers it poses to the stability and security of states;
Desirous of strengthening cooperation among member states in order to forestall and combat terrorism;
Reaffirming the legitimate right of peoples for self-determination and independence pursuant to the principles of international law and the provisions of the Charters of the Organization of African Unity and the United Nations as well as the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights;
Concerned that the lives of innocent women and children are most adversely affected by terrorism;
Convinced that terrorism constitutes a serious violation of human rights and, in particular, the rights to physical integrity, life, freedom and security, and impedes socio-economic development through destabilisation of states;
Convinced further that terrorism cannot be justified under any circumstances and, consequently, should be combated in all its forms and manifestations, including those in which states are involved directly or indirectly, without regard to its origin, causes and objectives;
Aware of the growing links between terrorism and organised crime, including the illicit traffic of arms, drugs and money laundering;
Determined to eliminate terrorism in all its forms and manifestations;
HAVE AGREED AS FOLLOWS:
For the purposes of this Convention:
1. “Convention” means the OAU Convention on the Prevention and Combating of Terrorism.
2. “State party” means any member state of the Organization of African Unity which has ratified or acceded to this Convention and has deposited its instrument of ratification or accession with the Secretary-General of the Organization of African Unity.
3. “Terrorist act” means:
(b) any promotion, sponsoring, contribution to, command, aid, incitement, encouragement, attempt, threat, conspiracy, organising, or procurement of any person, with the intent to commit any act referred to in paragraph (a) (i) to(iii).
State parties undertake to:
1. Notwithstanding the provisions of article 1, the struggle waged by peoples in accordance with the principles of international law for their liberation or self-determination, including armed struggle against colonialism, occupation, aggression and domination by foreign forces shall not be considered as terrorist acts.
1. State parties undertake to refrain from any acts aimed at organising, supporting, financing, committing or inciting to commit terrorist acts, or providing havens for terrorists, directly or indirectly, including the provision of weapons and their stockpiling in their countries and the issuing of visas and travel documents.
2. State parties shall adopt any legitimate measures aimed at preventing and combating terrorist acts in accordance with the provisions of this Convention and their respective national legislation. In particular, they shall do the following:
State parties shall co-operate among themselves in preventing and combating terrorist acts in conformity with national legislation and procedures of each state in the following areas:
3. State parties undertake to respect the confidentiality of the information exchanged among them and not to provide such information to another state that is not party to this Convention, or to a third state party, without the prior consent of the state from where such information originated.
4. State parties undertake to promote co-operation among themselves and to help each other with regard to procedures relating to the investigation and arrest of persons suspected of, charged with or convicted of terrorist acts, in conformity with the national law of each state.
5. State parties shall co-operate among themselves in conducting and exchanging studies and researches on how to combat terrorist acts and to exchange expertise relating to control of terrorist acts.
6. State parties shall co-operate among themselves, where possible, in providing any available technical assistance in drawing up programmes or organising, where necessary and for the benefit of their personnel, joint training courses involving one or several state parties in the area of control of terrorist acts, in order to improve their scientific, technical and operational capacities to prevent and combat such acts.
PART III: STATE JURISDICTION
3. Upon ratifying or acceding to this Convention, each state party shall notify the Secretary-General of the Organization of African Unity of the jurisdiction it has established in accordance with paragraph 2 under its national law. Should any change take place, the state party concerned shall immediately notify the Secretary-General.
4. Each state party shall likewise take such measures as may be necessary to establish its jurisdiction over the acts set forth in article 1 in cases where the alleged offender is present in its territory and it does not extradite that person to any of the state parties which have established their jurisdiction in accordance with paragraphs 1 or 2.
1. Upon receiving information that a person who has committed or who is alleged to have committed any terrorist act as defined in article 1 may be present in its territory, the state party concerned shall take such measures as may be necessary under its national law to investigate the facts contained in the information.
2. Upon being satisfied that the circumstances so warrant, the state party in whose territory the offender or alleged offender is present shall take the appropriate measures under its national law so as to ensure that person’s presence for the purpose of prosecution.
3. Any person against whom the measures referred to in paragraph 2 are being taken shall be entitled to:
4. The rights referred to in paragraph 3 shall be exercised in conformity with the national law of the state in whose territory the offender or alleged offender is present, subject to the provision that the said laws must enable full effect to be given to the purposes for which the rights accorded under paragraph 3 are intended.
PART IV: EXTRADITION
1. Subject to the provisions of paragraphs 2 and 3 of this article, the state parties shall undertake to extradite any person charged with or convicted of any terrorist act carried out on the territory of another state party and whose extradition is requested by one of the state parties in conformity with the rules and conditions provided for in this Convention or under extradition agreements between the state parties and within the limits of their national laws.
2. Any state party may, at the time of the deposit of its instrument of ratification or accession, transmit to the Secretary-General of the OAU the grounds on which extradition may not be granted and shall at the same time indicate the legal basis in its national legislation or international conventions to which it is a party which excludes such extradition. The Secretary-General shall forward these grounds to the state parties.
3. Extradition shall not be granted if final judgment has been passed by a competent authority of the requested state upon the person in respect of the terrorist act or acts for which extradition is requested. Extradition may also be refused if the competent authority of the requested state has decided either not to institute or terminate proceedings in respect of the same act or acts.
4. A state party in whose territory an alleged offender is present shall be obliged, whether or not the offence was committed in its territory, to submit the case without undue delay to its competent authorities for the purpose of prosecution if it does not extradite that person.
Each state party undertakes to include as an extraditable offence any terrorist act as defined in article 1, in any extradition treaty existing between any of the state parties before or after the entry into force of this Convention.
Exchange of extradition requests between the state parties to this Convention shall be effected directly either through diplomatic channels or other appropriate organs in the concerned states.
Extradition requests shall be in writing, and shall be accompanied in particular by the following:
In urgent cases, the competent authority of the state making the extradition may, in writing, request that the state seized of the extradition request arrest the person in question provisionally. Such provisional arrest shall be for a reasonable period in accordance with the national law of the requested state.
1. Where a state party receives several extradition requests from different state parties in respect of the same or different terrorist acts, it shall decide on these requests having regard to all the prevailing circumstances, particularly the possibility of subsequent extradition, the respective dates of receipt of the requests, and the degree of seriousness of the crime.
2. Upon agreeing to extradite, state parties shall seize and transmit all funds and related materials purportedly used in the commission of the terrorist act to the requesting state as well as relevant incriminating evidence.
3. Such funds, incriminating evidence and related materials, upon confirmation of their use in the terrorist act by the requested state, shall be transmitted to the requesting state even if, for reasons of death or escape of the accused, the extradition in question cannot take place.
4. The provisions in paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 of this article shall not affect the rights of any of the state parties or bona fide third parties regarding the materials or revenues mentioned above.
1. Any state party may, while recognising the sovereign rights of state parties in matters of criminal investigation, request any other state party to carry out, with its assistance and cooperation, on the latter’s territory, criminal investigations related to any judicial proceedings concerning alleged terrorist acts and, in particular:
(b) the opening of judicial information;
(c) the initiation of investigation processes;
(d) the collection of documents and recordings or, in their absence, authenticated copies thereof;
(e) conducting inspections and tracing of assets for evidentiary purposes;
(f) executing searches and seizures; and
(g) service of judicial documents.
A commission rogatoire may be refused:
The extra-territorial investigation (commission rogatoire) shall be executed in compliance with the provisions of national laws of the requested state. The request for an extra-territorial investigation (commission rogatoire) relating to a terrorist act shall not be rejected on the grounds of the principle of confidentiality of bank operations or financial institutions, where applicable.
The state parties shall extend to each other the best possible mutual police and judicial assistance for any investigation, criminal prosecution or extradition proceedings relating to the terrorist acts as set forth in this Convention.
The state parties undertake to develop, if necessary, especially by concluding bilateral and multilateral agreements and arrangements, mutual legal assistance procedures aimed at facilitating and speeding up investigations and collecting evidence, as well as cooperation between law enforcement agencies in order to detect and prevent terrorist acts.
PART VI: FINAL PROVISIONS
1. This Convention shall be open to signature, ratification or accession by the member states of the Organization of African Unity.
2. The instruments of ratification or accession to the present Convention shall be deposited with the Secretary-General of Organization of African Unity.
3. The Secretary-General of the Organization of African Unity shall inform member states of the Organization of the deposit of each instrument of ratification or accession.
4. No state party may enter a reservation which is incompatible with the object and purposes of this Convention.
5. No state party may withdraw from this Convention except on the basis of a written request addressed to the Secretary-General of the Organization of African Unity. The withdrawal shall take effect six months after the date of receipt of the written request by the Secretary-General of the Organization of African Unity.
1. This Convention shall enter into force thirty days after the deposit of the fifteenth instrument of ratification with the Secretary-General of the Organization of African Unity.
2. For each of the states that shall ratify or accede to this Convention, it shall enter into force thirty days after the date of the deposit by that state party of its instrument of ratification or accession.
1. Special protocols or agreements may, if necessary, supplement the provisions of this Convention.
2. This Convention may be amended if a state party makes a written request to that effect to the Secretary-General of the Organization of African Unity. The Assembly of Heads of State and Government may only consider the proposed amendment after all the state parties have been duly informed of it at least three months in advance.
3. The amendment shall be approved by a simple majority of the state parties. It shall come into force for each state which has accepted it in accordance with its constitutional procedures three months after the Secretary-General has received notice of the acceptance.
1. Nothing in this Convention shall be interpreted as derogating from the general principles of international law, in particular the principles of international humanitarian law, as well as the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
2. Any dispute that may arise between the state parties regarding the interpretation or application of this Convention shall be amicably settled by direct agreement between them. Failing such settlement, any one of the state parties may refer the dispute to the International Court of Justice in conformity with the Statute of the Court or by arbitration by other state parties to this Convention.
The original of this Convention, of which the Arabic, English, French and Portuguese texts are equally authentic, shall be deposited with the Secretary-General of the Organization of African Unity.
For the Annexure containing the list of international instruments referred to in article 2(b), see www.up.ac.za/chr