Treaties, States Parties and Commentaries
Treaties and Documents
Geneva Conventions of 1949 and Additional Protocols, and their Commentaries
Historical Treaties and Documents
OAU Convention for the Elimination of Mercenarism in Africa. Libreville, 3rd July 1977.
ARTICLE 1 - DEFINITION
1. A mercenary is any person who:
a) is specially recruited locally or abroad in order to fight in an armed conflicts;
b) does in fact take a direct part in the hostilities;
c) is motivated to take part in the hostilities essentially by the desire for private gain and in fact is promised by or on behalf of a party to the conflict material compensation;
d) is neither a national of a party to the conflict nor a resident of territory controlled by a party to the conflicts;
e) is not a member of the armed forces of a party to the conflict; and
f) is not sent by a state other than a party to the conflict on official mission as a member of the armed forces of the said state.
2. The crime of mercenarism is committed by the individual, group or association, representative of a State or the State itself who with the aim of opposing by armed violence a process of self-determination stability or the territorial integrity of another State, practises any of the following acts:
a) Shelters, organises, finances, assists, equips, trains, promotes, supports or in any manner employs bands of mercenaries;
b) Enlists, enrols or tries to enrol in the said bands;
c) Allows the activities mentioned in paragraph (a) to be carried out in any territory under its jurisdiction or in any place under its control or affords facilities for transit, transport or other operations of the above mentioned forces.
3. Any person, natural or juridical who commits the crime of mercenarism as defined in paragraph 1 * of this Article commits an Offence considered as a crime against peace and security in Africa and shall be punished as such.
* Note. - It is the second paragraph of the first article of the African Convention, because the first paragraph deals with the definition of the mercenary and not with the definition of the crime of mercenarism (our note).