Seventh Review Conference of the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BWC)

December 2, 2011

  1. The Seventh Review Conference of the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BWC) will be held in Geneva, Switzerland, from December 5 (Monday) to December 22 (Thursday). H.E. Ambassador Mari Amano, Permanent Representative of Japan to the Conference on Disarmament, will attend the Review Conference as the head of the Japanese delegation and will deliver a general statement.

  2. Review Conference of the BWC has been held in every five years. At this Review Conference, a wide range of discussions will be held regarding the implementation of the BWC over last five years, as well as ways to further strengthen its operation. The Conference will adopt a final document, which will include the activities of the next intersessional process (2012–2015).  Japan believes that adopting a final document containing concrete measures at this Review Conference is vital to enhance the effectiveness of the BWC.  Japan has made proposals on the activities of the next intersessional period.  In the margins of the Review Conference, Japan will co-host with Switzerland a side-event on education and awareness raising for scientists on dual-use issues associated with the illicit use or misuse of bio-technology and biological agents.

  3. Japan hopes that our contribution to the BWC Review Conference will help bolster international disarmament and non-proliferation efforts regarding weapons of mass destruction including biological weapons, and will assist reducing global bio-threats.

 (Reference) Seventh Review Conference of the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC)
1.  Article XII of the BWC states, “five years after the entry into force of this Convention, a conference of States Parties to the Convention shall be held at Geneva, Switzerland, to review the operation of the convention with a view to assuring that the purposes of the preamble and the provisions of the convention are being realised.” Review conferences have been held every five years since the first review conference in 1980.

2.  During the Seventh Review Conference, the States Parties will discuss and take decisions regarding the implementation of the BWC and the activities and budget of the next intersessional period (2012-2015).  The Chair of the Review Conference will be the Ambassador of the Netherlands to the Conference of Disarmament.  At the Review Conference, a message by the Secretary-General of the United Nations will be delivered followed by national statements of States Parties.  The Review Conference will then conduct an article by article review and discussions on several of the main issues.  Lastly, a final document must be agreed to before the end of the Review Conference.

3.  A statement by the G8 Foreign Ministers on the Seventh Review Conference emphasizing the necessity of strengthening the BWC regime was issued in March this year.

    • (*The foregoing is a provisional translation. The date indicated above denotes the date of issue of the original press release in Japanese.)