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This section contains up to date information on the Biological Weapons Convention, efforts of States Parties, the work of the Chair and activities undertaken by the Implementation Support Unit.



News
  • A report on the 2014 Meeting of States Parties - The Harvard Sussex Program on Chemical and Biological Weapons has published a report on the 2014 MSP.
  • Andorra accedes to the BWC - The US Department of State has informed the ISU that Andorra deposited its instrument of accession to the BWC at the US Consulate in Barcelona on 27 February 2015. The BWC entered into force for Andorra upon receipt of the instrument in Washington, DC on 2 March 2015. As of this date, Andorra is therefore the 173rd State Party to the Convention. 
  • Chairman briefs regional groups - on Monday 16 March, the 2015 BWC Chairman, Ambassador Mazlan Muhammad of Malaysia, briefed the Group of NAM and Other States (09:00), the Eastern European Group (10.00) and the Western Group (11.00). His comments covered the approach to work in 2015, building on the work from 2012-14, promoting effective action, strengthening Article VII, the Meeting of Experts and ISU staffing.
  • BWC 40th anniversary commemorative event - On 30 March 2015 in the Council Chamber in the Palais des Nations in Geneva a commemorative event will take place to mark the 40th anniversary of the entry into force of the BWC. An invitation from the Chairman, Ambassador Muhammad of Malaysia, was sent to States Parties, Signatories and States not party to the BWC on 12 March. The invitation for NGOs and others can be found here. A webpage to mark the anniversary is available here where updated information about the commemoration will also be posted.
  • Explanation of position by the Russian Federation - At the request of the Russian Federation, a document entitled "Explanation of Position by the Russian Federation" has been issued as a document of the 2014 Meeting of States Parties. The ISU has added the document to the list of official 2014 MSP documents and it can be found here.
  • BWC on social media – As an extension of this website on the Biological Weapons Convention, the ISU also manages a presence for the Convention on Twitter and Facebook. Neither will replace formal communications with States Parties nor replace this website as the repository of BWC-related information and announcements, but they will be used to amplify items posted here and to raise awareness of the BWC. On Twitter follow @bwcisu and use the hashtag #1972BWC for the Convention, #biodisarm for general items relating to biological disarmament and, for the 2015 meetings, we suggest to use #BWCMX2015 and #BWCMSP2015. For tweets relating to the 40th anniversary of the BWC this year, we suggest #BWC40 and for the Eighth Review Conference next year, we suggest #BWCRC8. On Facebook the page on the BWC can be found at https://www.facebook.com/1972BWC
  • Letter from Chairman - On 11 February the Chairman, Ambassador Muhammad of Malaysia, wrote to States Parties to outline his plans for the year. The letter included a number of specific requests for reflections, insights, and considerations.
  • Mauritania accedes to the BWC - The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office announced on 4 February 2015 that the Islamic Republic of Mauritania deposited its instrument of accession to the BWC in London on 28 January 2015. As of this date, Mauritania is therefore the 172nd State Party to the Convention. 
  • The ISU is seeking to recruit two new members of the Unit - a P4 Political Affairs Officer for which the application closing date is 26 February and a P3 Political Affairs Officer for which the closing date is 5 March. Please click on the links for further information and the application procedure.
  • ISU updates the "joining the BWC" webpage - The ISU has added more detailed practical information on how States can go about joining the BWC. The webpage now includes information on the relevant provisions of the Convention and on the functions of the Depository Governments. It also includes the contact details for each of the Depository Governments with whom instruments of ratification, accession or succession should be deposited and furthermore includes models of instruments of ratification, accession or succession. The updated webpage can be found via the navigation menu on the left, or here.
  • ISU sends out CBM reminder letter - On 15 January the ISU sent States Parties the annual reminder letter that the deadline for the submission of CBMs to cover 2014 is 15 April 2015. (Please click on the following links to the cover letter and reminder letter).


Related news and documents

  • The BioWeapons Monitor 2014 - The 2014 edition of the BioWeapons Monitor was launched at a side event entitled 'Building a Web of Prevention: Progress to Date' on 1 December 2014 at the BWC Meeting of States Parties.
  • Radio Briefing - On 30 November 2014 Radio New Zealand broadcasted a briefing on the upcoming BWC Meeting of States Parties featuring Dr Filippa Lentzos of King's College London.
  • Risks and Benefits of Gain-of-Function Research: Upcoming Symposium - As part of the U.S. government's deliberative process on gain-of-function research, the National Research Council and Institute of Medicine have been charged to hold a public meeting on gain-of-function research. The event will take place on 15-16 December 2014. Further information is available here.
  • A Workshop Report - The report of the 'Confidence and Compliance with the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC)' Workshop held in Geneva on 3 August 2014 and jointly organised by King's College London and the Geneva Centre for Security Policy is now published. It will also be presented at a side event at the BWC Meeting of States Parties.
  • A Report of the Meeting of Experts 2014 - A report from the Harvard Sussex Program on chemical and biological weapons has been published on the MX 2014.
  • Workshop on Advances in Understanding Pathogenicity, Sunday 3 August 2014 - See the linked document for more information.
  • A report on the Meeting of States Parties 2013 - A report from the Harvard Sussex Program on chemical and biological weapons has been published on the MSP 2013.




Older news items are available on the News Archive page.