Skip to main content


The Gambia defines and criminalizes terrorism in a dedicated 2002 law. The death penalty can be imposed for an act of terrorism under the law. There is no carve-out for the exercise of fundamental human rights. 

Compliance with International Law:
Last updated: one year ago

The Definition of Terrorism in Domestic Law

The 2002 Anti-Terrorism Act defines as acts of terrorism those including any act which:

(a) may seriously damage a country or an international organization; 

(b) is intended or can reasonably be regarded as having been intended to – 

(i) intimidate a population 

(ii) seriously destabilize or destroy the fundamental political, constitutional, economic or social structures of a country or any international organization, or 

(iii) otherwise influence a Government or an international organization; 

(c) involves or causes, as the case may be: (i) attacks on a person's life which may cause death, (ii) attacks on the physical integrity of a person, including rape, (iii) forcible deprivation or taking of a person's property, with or without the use of arms, including armed robbery against an individual or group of persons; (iii) kidnapping of a person, (iv) extensive destruction to a Government or public facility, a transport system, an infrastructure facility, including an information system, a fixed platform located on the continental shelf, a public place or private property, likely to endanger human life or result in major economic loss, (v) the seizure of an aircraft, a ship or other means of public or goods transport, (vi) the manufacture, possession, acquisition, transport, supply or use of weapons, explosives or of nuclear, biological or chemical weapons, as well as research into, and development of, biological and chemical weapons, (vii) the release of dangerous substance, or causing of fires, explosions or floods, the effect of which is to endanger human life, or (viii) interference with or disruption of the supply of water, power or any other fundamental natural resource, the effect of which is to endanger human life; 

(d) is designed to disrupt any computer system or the provision of services directly related to communication infrastructure, banking and financial services, utilities, transportation or key infrastructure; 

(e) is designed to disrupt the provision of essential emergency services such as the police, civil defense and medical services; or

(f) involves prejudice to public security or national defense.Art. 2, Anti-Terrorism Act.

Adherence to Global and Regional Terrorism Treaties


The Gambia is a State Party to only the 1999 Terrorist Financing Convention among the main United Nations treaties on terrorism.


Adherence to Global Terrorism Treaties
Treaty Adherence
1973 Convention on Crimes against Internationally Protected Persons State not party
1979 Hostage-Taking Convention State not party
1997 Terrorist Bombings Convention State not party
1999 Terrorist Financing Convention State Party
2005 Nuclear Terrorism Convention State not party


The Gambia is also a State Party to one of the main African treaties on terrorism.


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

Laws and Penalties for Terrorist Offences

Capital punishment is prescribed for an act of terrorism under the 2002 law.Art. 3(1)(a), 2002 Anti-Terrorism Act.Preparatory acts are punishable with a minimum of ten years in prison.Art. 3(1)(b), 2002 Anti-Terrorism Act. 

Article 4 of the Anti-Terrorism Act criminalizes membership or participation in a "proscribed terrorist organization" and attendance at "terrorist meetings" is prohibited by Article 5.

Counterterrorism Capacities and Policies at Domestic Level

The Gambia Police Force is the main law enforcement agency. It does not have a dedicated counterterrorist unit.


Gambia 2002 Anti-Terrorism Act (as amended in 2008)