During the second trimester of the year NIM staff participated in several events aimed at raising raise awareness about the importance of adopting effective national legislation to implement the BWC and CWC.
Scott Spence participated in the workshop ‘Options and proposals to strengthen the confidence-building measures mechanism of the Biological Weapons Convention (Workshop 3)’ held in Berlin, from 26 to 27 April. Participants discussed the relevance of the current forms for building confidence in compliance with the BWC.
Scott also represented VERTIC at the ‘Public Health, Security and Law Enforcement Partnership in Bioincident Pre-planning and Response’ workshop, held in Tblisi, Georgia, from 11 to 15 May. Topics included Public Health Security: A Multi-Layered System of Defence (internationally and regionally) and Epidemiological Surveillance and Investigation. The participants also worked through a bioincident scenario during a tabletop exercise, involving the intentional release of a genetically modified virus capable of expressing the botulinim neurotoxin.
Angela Woodward attended the workshop ‘The contribution of the OPCW to the international security dimension: achievements and challenges’, held in Berlin, from 7 to 8 June. The seminar focused on the state of implementation of the Convention, relevant decisions of the policy-making organs; the future of industry verification and developments in science and technology and their impact on the Convention; perspectives from NGOs; and cooperation among international organizations.
Rocío Escauriaza Leal represented VERTIC at the workshop on the implementation of UNSCR 1540-Committee, held in Croatia, from 14 to 17 June. Several countries approached VERTIC staff during this workshop to discuss approaches and further co-operation on strengthening their legislation for the implementation of the BWC and Resolution 1540.
In the last quarter the team completed nine legislative surveys and conducted two additional legislative assistance activities and an awareness raising activity. VERTIC has also liaised with three Arab countries to discuss how we might cooperate to further strengthen their BW-related legislation. At present, VERTIC is preparing for a legislative drafting workshop that will take place at the beginning of August in London.
The NIM team is deeply grateful to Renata Dalaqua for her valuable contribution, her hard work and enthusiasm during her internship with the National Implementation Measures Programme. A native of Brazil, Renata assisted the NIM team with outreach to Lusophone countries.