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Weapons of mass destruction: combating proliferation

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Weapons of mass destruction: combating proliferation

 

SUMMARY OF:

Decision (CFSP) 2017/809 on the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540 (2004) on the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery

WHAT IS THE AIM OF THE DECISION?

In accordance with the EU’s 2003 strategy against proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the decision supports the implementation of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540. It follows on from similar decisions adopted in 2006, in 2008 and in 2013.

The EU strategy is designed to prevent, deter, halt and, if possible, eliminate weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programmes worldwide. Since its inception in 2003, the basic principles of the strategy have included:

  • Strengthening international non-proliferation mechanisms and working to improve systems for verifying violations of rules laid down in multilateral treaties.
  • Promoting a regionally and internationally stable environment, by strengthening programmes to promote disarmament and incorporating the non-proliferation objective in all EU political, diplomatic and economic activities.
  • Working closely with key partners like the USA, Russia or NATO and assisting non-EU countries.

KEY POINTS

The Council continuously monitors the strategy, receiving progress reports every 6 months.

The strategy is implemented through projects and activities such as:

In 2008, the EU adopted new lines for action on WMD proliferation. These were designed to make the 2003 strategy more effective by, for instance, raising awareness in scientific, academic and financial institutions and developing measures to prevent the transfer of knowledge about WMDs to the wrong parties. They reiterate the importance of the 2003 strategy and the principles that determine EU action (effective multilateralism, prevention and international cooperation) and their role in helping implement the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540.

UN Security Council Resolution 1540 obliges its signatories to refrain from supporting by any means non-state actors* from:

  • developing,
  • acquiring,
  • manufacturing,
  • possessing,
  • transporting,
  • transferring or using

nuclear, chemical or biological weapons and their delivery systems.

In 2011, the Security Council adopted UN Resolution 1977, which reaffirms that the proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and their means of delivery constitutes a threat to international peace and security. It extends until 2021 the mandate of the 1540 Committee, a committee whose role is to engage actively with states and relevant international, regional and subregional organisations to promote the sharing of experience, lessons learned and effective practices, in the areas covered by UNSCR 1540.

The decision cites the EU’s support, in line with its WMD strategy, for the objective of fostering the role of the UN Security Council and enhancing its expertise in addressing the challenges of proliferation. In practical terms, this support consists of sub-regional workshops, country visits, meetings, events, training and public relations efforts. The UN Office for Disarmament Affairs is responsible for the technical implementation of the projects, in cooperation with the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the African Union, the Organisation of American States and the League of Arab States, as appropriate.

BACKGROUND

For more information, see:

KEY TERMS

Non-state actors: an individual or organisation with significant political influence but is not allied to any particular country or state.

MAIN DOCUMENT

Council Decision (CFSP) 2017/809 of 11 May 2017 in support of the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540 (2004) on the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery (OJ L 121, 12.5.2017, pp. 39-44)

RELATED DOCUMENTS

Council Decision (CFSP) 2015/259 of 17 February 2015 in support of activities of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in the framework of the implementation of the EU Strategy against Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (OJ L 43, 18.2.2015, pp. 14-28)

Council Decision 2014/913/CFSP of 15 December 2014 in support of the Hague Code of Conduct and ballistic missile non-proliferation in the framework of the implementation of the EU Strategy against Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (OJ L 360, 17.12.2014, pp. 44-52)

Council Decision 2013/668/CFSP of 18 November 2013 in support of World Health Organisation activities in the area of biosafety and biosecurity in the framework of the European Union Strategy against the proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (OJ L 310, 20.11.2013, pp. 13-19)

Council Decision 2013/391/CFSP of 22 July 2013 in support of the practical implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540 (2004) on non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery (OJ L 198, 23.7.2013, pp. 40-44)

Successive amendments to Decision 2013/391/CFSP have been incorporated into the original document. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.

Council Decision 2010/430/CFSP of 26 July 2010 establishing a European network of independent non-proliferation think tanks in support of the implementation of the EU Strategy against Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (OJ L 202, 4.8.2010, pp. 5-9)

Council Joint Action 2008/368/CFSP of 14 May 2008 in support of the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540 (2004) and in the framework of the implementation of the EU strategy against the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (OJ L 127, 15.5.2008, pp. 78-83)

Council Joint Action 2006/419/CFSP of 12 June 2006 in support of the implementation of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540 (2004) and in the framework of the implementation of the EU Strategy against the Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (OJ L 165, 17.6.2006, pp. 30-34)

EU strategy against proliferation of weapons of mass destruction of 12 December 2003 (doc. 15708/03 - not published in the Official Journal)

last update 02.03.2018

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