The Ministers regretted unsubstantiated allegations of non-compliance with relevant instruments on Weapons of Mass Destruction and called on States Parties to such instruments that make such allegations to follow the procedures set out in those instruments and to provide the necessary substantiation for their allegations.
The Ministers of the States Parties to the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BWC) reaffirmed their conviction that the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their Destruction is essential for the maintenance of international and regional peace and security. They reaffirmed the Movement's continued determination, for the sake of humankind, that the possibility of any use of bacteriological (biological) agents and toxins as weapons should be completely excluded, and the conviction that such use would be repugnant to the conscience of humankind. They recognised the particular importance of strengthening the Convention through multilateral negotiations for a legally binding Protocol to the Convention. They believed that the effective contribution of the Convention to international and regional peace and security would be enhanced through universal adherence to the Convention. They stressed the importance for all States Parties to pursue the objectives that were set forth by the Fourth Review Conference and underlined that the only sustainable method of strengthening the Convention is through multilateral negotiations aimed at concluding a non-discriminatory legally binding agreement. They have been deeply disappointed at the inability that has been demonstrated in the endeavours of the States Parties of the BWC to successfully undertake initiatives to strengthen the implementation of the Convention. They further regretted the limited nature of the decision that was taken during the resumed session of the Fifth Review Conference held from 11-15 November 2002 in Geneva and were disappointed that the opportunity to strengthen the Convention was foregone and that limited work, which at best only has the potential of enhancing the implementation of the Convention, is all that could be achieved despite the Movement’s best endeavours. They believed that, however, the Movement has succeeded in preventing any attempt to foreclose the option of more meaningful work in the future. In this regard, the movement has succeeded in preserving multilateralism as the only vehicle for preventing reprehensible use of disease as instruments of terror and war in a sustainable way. They welcomed the decision of the Meeting of States Parties of the BWC held from 10 – 14 November 2003 in Geneva to approve the nomination of South Africa as Chairman of the Meeting of Experts and Meeting of States Parties of the BWC in 2004.
The Ministers of the States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) welcomed the increasing number of ratifications of the Convention and invited all States who have still not ratified it to do so as soon as possible with the view to its universality. They also underlined the urgency of satisfactorily resolving the unresolved issues in the framework of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) with a view to paving the way for the effective, full and non-discriminatory implementation of the Convention. In this context, they reiterated their call on the developed countries to promote international co-operation through the transfer of technology, material and equipment for peaceful purposes in the chemical field and the removal of all and any discriminatory restrictions that are contrary to the letter and spirit of the Convention. They also called upon States having declared possession of chemical weapons to bring about the destruction of their chemical weapons at the earliest possible date. While