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Chemical And Biological Warfare

Volume 827: debated on Monday 29 November 1971

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asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the present position of international discussions on the banning of chemical and biological warfare.

During the past year, a draft convention on the prohibition of the development, production and stockpiling of bacteriological—biological—and toxic weapons and on their destruction, has been negotiated in the Conference of the Committee on Disarmament in Geneva. The draft convention has now been referred to the United Nations General Assembly. We hope that it will be endorsed by the General Assembly and opened for signature at an early date.Under Article IX of this convention, States Parties will affirm the recognised objective of effective prohibition of chemical weapons and will undertake to continue negotiations in good faith with a view to reaching early agremeent on effective measures to this end. Discussions, which have already been going on for some time in the Conference of the Committee on Disarmament, will be resumed when the Committee reassembles in the New Year.