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Gabon has dedicated provisions on terrorism in its amended Criminal Code of 2019. The Constitution indirectly incorporates the prohibition in the 1981 African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights allowing national territory to be used for terrorist activities against any other State.

Compliance with International Law:
Last updated: one year ago

The Definition of Terrorism in Domestic Law

Gabon's criminal code defines acts of terrorism as a set of predicate offences committed intentionally in relation to an individual or collective undertaking aimed at seriously disturbing public order by intimidation or terror. Offences include financing as well as acts of violence.Art. 194, Criminal Code of Gabon.Also an act of terrorism is the intentional introduction into the atmosphere, ground, or water "a substance likely to endanger the health of humans, animals or the natural environment" with the aim of seriously disturbing public order by intimidation or terror.Art. 195, Criminal Code of Gabon.

Adherence to Global and Regional Terrorism Treaties

Gabon is a State Party to all of the main United Nations treaties on terrorism.

Adherence to Global Terrorism Treaties
Treaty Adherence
1973 Convention on Crimes against Internationally Protected Persons State Party
1979 Hostage-Taking Convention State Party
1997 Terrorist Bombings Convention State Party
1999 Terrorist Financing Convention State Party
2005 Nuclear Terrorism Convention State Party


Gabon is also a State Party to the main regional treaties on terrorism.

Adherence to Regional Terrorism Treaties
Treaty Adherence
1999 Algiers Convention State Party
2004 Protocol to the Algiers Convention State Party

Laws and Penalties for Terrorist Offences

The penalties for criminal offences are raised when they are committed with terrorist intent. The maximum penalty is life imprisonment.Art. 201, Criminal Code of Gabon.The maximum penalty for introducing unlawful substances into the natural environment with terrorist intent is twenty years in prison.Art. 202, Criminal Code of Gabon.  

The law has seemingly been abused for political purposes. The United States Department of State has reported that in August 2020, agents from the General Directorate for Investigation of the National Gendarmerie arrested the Dynamique Unitaire Trade Union Confederation leader Jean Bosco Boungoumou without a warrant. Accused of broadcasting a video jeopardizing public order, he was detained without charge for longer than the law allows and not permitted prompt access to a lawyer. Later in August 2020, prosecutors charged him with terrorism and conspiracy. He remained in prison pending trial at year’s end.

Counterterrorism Capacities and Policies at Domestic Level

The National Gendarmerie of Gabon (Gendarmerie nationale gabonaise) is the national police force of Gabon responsible for law enforcement in Gabon.


Gabon 2019 Amendments to the Penal Code

Constitution of Gabon (French original)

Criminal Code of Gabon (original text)