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Biological Weapons

Volume 715: debated on Wednesday 16 December 2009


Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what support they are giving to the Royal Society's efforts to secure more regular reappraisal of scientific developments in biological weapons controls. [HL495]

The Government agree with the Royal Society that new scientific and technological developments relevant to the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention need to be reviewed more frequently than every five years, when review conferences are convened. The Government addressed this issue in a Green Paper of April 2002 Strengthening the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention: Countering the Threat from Biological Weapons (Cm 5484). The Government are committed to ensuring that the convention continues to take account of the challenges presented by rapid advancements in the life sciences. We maintain a dialogue with the Royal Society and other relevant institutions on this issue, and the UK will work with partners to address it at the next review conference in 2011.