Last Updated: Friday, 27 May 2016, 08:49 GMT

Country Reports on Terrorism 2011 - Tanzania

Publisher United States Department of State
Publication Date 31 July 2012
Cite as United States Department of State, Country Reports on Terrorism 2011 - Tanzania, 31 July 2012, available at: [accessed 30 May 2016]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Overview: Since the bombing of the U.S. Embassy in July 1998, Tanzania has not experienced any major terrorist attacks. In November, Minister Shamsa Vuai Nahodha of the Ministry of Home Affairs announced that police took custody of 10 young Tanzanians believed to have connections with al-Shabaab, who were arrested by Kenyan immigration authorities along Kenya's northern border with Somalia. Inter-agency representatives of Tanzania's National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), operated by the Tanzanian Police Force with inter-agency representation from the military, prisons, and the Tanzania Intelligence Service, still consider diplomatic missions, foreign investment projects, and tourist areas targets for terrorist attacks.

In October, Tanzania formalized the regulations for its Prevention of Terrorism Act passed in 2002. Progress on the regulations had previously stalled for years as a result of a change in administration and disagreements over the responsibilities assigned in the Act. Now that the law and associated regulations are in place, Tanzania worked to enact a national terrorism strategy to address areas that require improvement.

The most significant example of Tanzania-U.S. counterterrorism cooperation was the case against the perpetrators of the 1998 U.S. Embassy bombing. In U.S. federal court in New York in January 2011, Ahmed Ghailani was sentenced to life in prison for his involvement in the attack. The Government of Tanzania was instrumental in assisting with the investigation and providing the testimony that brought Ghailani to justice. The director of Tanzania's NCTC provided key testimony during the Ghailani trial.

The Tanzania Police Force (TPF) has been very receptive to State Department Antiterrorism Assistance training and over 250 officers were trained in dozens of courses in 2011. The TPF has adopted many of the U.S. guidelines, best practices, and has incorporated U.S. training into its curricula.

Legislation and Law Enforcement: The November issuance of implementing regulations for the 2002 Prevention of Terrorism Act represented the key development in counterterrorism legislation this year. The NCTC reported that the United Kingdom played a central role in assisting Tanzania with its draft regulations. Neither the NCTC nor the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) reported any enforcement actions for the year, but both organizations maintained working relationships with Tanzanian Customs and Border Security (CBS). As the NCTC was composed of a number of inter-agency officials, the organization has access to Customs and Border Security through its Immigration representative. The FIU was regularly in contact with the Tanzanian Revenue Authority, which, in turn, liaised with CBS. Tanzanian Border Security officials continued to use the Personal Identification Secure Comparison and Evaluation System (PISCES) system, with biometric upgrades, at eight ports of entry. Tanzania also continued to participate in the Department of State's Antiterrorism Assistance program.

Countering Terrorist Finance: Tanzania is a member of the Eastern and Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group, a Financial Action Task Force (FATF)-style regional body. Tanzania was publicly identified by the FATF in October 2010 for strategic anti-money laundering/ counterterrorist finance (AML/CTF) deficiencies, and committed to an action plan with the FATF to address these deficiencies. In October 2011, the FATF determined that Tanzania's progress in implementing this action plan had been insufficient and that it needed to take adequate action to address its main deficiencies. The FIU is the Tanzanian government office most closely linked with AML/CTF efforts and it did not have the ability to conduct proactive targeting. Since its establishment in 2007, the FIU has received a total of 40 referrals; only one concerned terrorist finance. The staff of the FIU grew from five to 16 in 2011, as it filled out the staffing requirements set forth by law. The FIU was also working to join the Egmont Group; it was previously unable to apply for membership because it was not a national body; Zanzibar had its own unit. This issue has since been resolved, and the FIU now covers Zanzibar as well.

Tanzania is largely compliant with international standards for the criminalization of terrorist financing. Tanzania monitored formal remittance services, but the FIU said it had no means of identifying or tracking money/value transfer services such as hawala. Non-profit organizations must declare their assets when initially registering with the government, but their assets were not subsequently reviewed on a regular basis. Tanzanian law does not contain a threshold transaction amount that triggers an automatic review. FIU representatives stated that they were working to resolve this. Banks could receive a transfer of any amount without raising any alarm. Travelers coming into the country may enter unimpeded with any amount of hard currency.

For further information on money laundering and financial crimes, we refer you to the 2011 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR), Volume 2, Money Laundering and Financial Crimes:

Regional and International Cooperation: Tanzania is a member of the South African Development Community and the East African Community, both of which have regular working groups that address counterterrorism. On a regional level, the NCTC has coordinated with Nairobi's Antiterrorism Center, and successfully extradited suspects of the 2010 Uganda bombings to Uganda for trial.

Search Refworld