Overview: The Government of Tanzania cooperates with the United States and regional partners on select security and counterterrorism initiatives. In 2017, Tanzania experienced a series of suspected terrorist attacks in the coastal region of Pwani, primarily on police and low-level ruling party officials. Tanzanian security services led the counterterrorism response, mainly through an increased presence in affected areas and a broad exercise of police power. The police's heavy-handed approach in Pwani may have helped deter further attacks in the region in 2017, however, the Tanzanian government failed to adopt a whole-of-government approach to address the underlying dynamics of such attacks. We refer you to the State Department's Country Reports on Human Rights Practices and Report on International Religious Freedom for further information.

2017 Terrorist Incidents: Between April and July, masked gunmen killed more than 30 police and local political officials in the Pwani region in a series of small-scale attacks, largely at night. The perpetrators, who did not claim allegiance to a terrorist group, used weapons and ammunition captured from the police in subsequent attacks and left intimidating notes at the scene warning against cooperation with the authorities. The attacks continued on an almost weekly basis into July despite intense government countermeasures. No subsequent attacks were reported, but the Special Police Zone staffed by the Field Force Unit and other security officers, remained in place at the end of 2017. In August, the Inspector General of Police declared the situation in the outskirts of Dar es Salaam resolved following the killing of more than a dozen suspected perpetrators, including the alleged leader of the attacks. Police arrested and detained hundreds of suspects alleged to have been involved in the attacks under the auspices of the Prevention of Terrorism Act. At year's end, most had not been formally charged and many were held in remand.

Official government statements and the media frequently refer to suspects involved in violent crimes as "bandits," making it unclear whether additional incidents are the result of terrorism.

Legislation, Law Enforcement, and Border Security: Tanzania's counterterrorism legal framework is governed by the Prevention of Terrorism Act of 2002. There were no significant changes to the legislation in 2017. In November, the Department of Justice's State Department-funded Resident Legal Advisor facilitated a week-long workshop with 29 participants from 15 key governmental agencies to assess Tanzania's counterterrorism laws, guide stakeholders in drafting recommendations for legislative and procedural amendments, and modernize laws regarding the prosecution of foreign terrorist fighter cases. The workshop is part of a larger initiative to strengthen the country's counterterrorism legislative framework.

Tanzania's National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) is an interagency unit composed of officers from the intelligence, police, defense, immigration, and prison sectors who coordinate regularly on counterterrorism issues. The organization struggles to operate effectively due to a weak mandate, a limited budget, and uneven interagency cooperation. The NCTC has participated in capacity-building efforts including training. In 2017, seven senior law enforcement officials, including representatives from the NCTC, attended the International Law Enforcement Academy Executive Policy and Development Symposium on Countering Violent Extremism and Crisis Leadership to develop deeper knowledge of leadership principles and violent extremism. The U.S. National Counterterrorism Center also led crisis management training in October for security and emergency personnel.

The Department of State's Antiterrorism Assistance program delivered a Senior Crisis Management Seminar to bolster senior law enforcement's ability to function during a crisis.

Securing Tanzanian borders is a chronic challenge for the government. The use of temporary or emergency identity and travel documents was widespread and complicates immigration security efforts. Additionally, border management systems were fragmented, with some crossings using the U.S.-provided Personal Identification Secure Comparison and Evaluation System (PISCES), some using International Organization for Migration (IOM) or other unknown systems, or in some cases border officials do not use an electronic records systems at all.

Countering the Financing of Terrorism: Tanzania is a member of the Eastern and Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group, a Financial Action Task Force-style regional body. The Tanzania Financial Intelligence Unit is a member of the Egmont Group. Tanzania continued to make progress on strengthening anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism including through regulatory oversight of foreign exchange bureaus and money remitters. In January and March, the United States co-sponsored workshops for Tanzanian stakeholders to improve Tanzania's mutual legal assistance procedures and increase international cooperation in the investigation of transnational crimes, including terrorist financing and money laundering.

For further information on money laundering and financial crimes, see the 2018 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR), Volume II, Money Laundering and Financial Crimes.

Countering Violent Extremism (CVE): Tanzania's NCTC continued to lead CVE efforts and is the UN Development Program's partner in a multi-year project to prevent violent extremism that began in the spring of 2017. Efforts were underway to draft a national preventing violent extremism strategy and action plan.

In general, the Government of Tanzania views terrorism as primarily an external threat to Tanzanian security and continued to focus on law enforcement and intelligence services with little engagement or coordination with civil society.

International and Regional Cooperation: Tanzania is a member of the African Union, the Southern African Development Community (SADC), and the East African Community, all of which implemented counterterrorism initiatives. Tanzania hosted a counterterrorism-focused SADC Special Forces Exercise in Tanga in August. Special Forces units from all SADC countries participated, and the exercise included a hostage rescue scenario.


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