India: BioWeapons Monitor (BWPP)
The BioWeapons Monitor is an initiative of the BioWeapons Prevention Project (BWPP) to help monitor compliance with the international norm established primarily in the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention (BWC). In particular, it aims to increase transparency of activities relevant to the BWC, which the current treaty regime does not do sufficiently.
Preventing states and non-state actors from acquiring and using biological weapons is an urgent unmet need. The BioWeapons Monitor seeks to provide factual information that will improve discussions on strengthening implementation of the BWC and other national and international measures that support the ban on biological weapons. It works in good faith in order to benefit the international community as a whole.
The BioWeapons Monitor is not a technical verification system, but an effort of civil society to hold governments accountable for their obligations to eliminate biological weapons permanently and to prevent their re-emergence. It is meant to complement BWC states parties’ reporting requirements
The BioWeapons Monitor takes the Landmine Monitor as its model. The country reports offer factual information and are critical, but constructive, in their analysis. As a rule, any controversial piece of information is backed by two different sources. More important, countries were given the opportunity to respond to the information prior to publication.
This inaugural edition of the BioWeapons Monitor contains reports on four countries: Brazil, Germany, India and Kenya. In-country researchers collected and analysed the information in the publication. They used open sources and actively sought to procure information from government departments, research entities. Such a wide range of sources helps to ensure BioWeapons Monitor does not rely solely on governments being forthcoming in supplying information.
It is hoped that this edition will lead to an annual publication. The BioWeapons Monitor wishes to establish a comprehensive model of data collection and analysis, but serious time constraints connected - ably, data collection and analysis. Future editions would build on the relationships established by the in-country researchers with relevant experts on the ground and their experience of identifying and using data sources, painting a more complete picture of BWC-relevant activities.
The BioWeapons Monitor is a work in progress, some- thing to be updated, corrected and improved. The comments of governmental and non-governmental actors are welcome. Comments should be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Origins of the BioWeapons Monitor
The idea for a BioWeapons Monitor emerged in 2001 and 2002 in response to the failed negotiations on a legally-binding Protocol to the BWC. Over time, its aims became more concrete. In for Security Studies in South Africa, the Research Group for Biological Arms Control in Germany,
take up the challenge of increasing transparency in BWC-related areas by monitoring the activities of states. With the input of the BWPP Board of Directors, the project was developed further, and funding was secured in early 2010. The project’s steering group met for a coordination meeting in mitted by mid-October 2010.
The Governments of Germany and Norway kindly funded this inaugural edition of the BioWeapons Monitor. The views expressed in it do not necessarily reflect their opinion.
List of researchers and advisers
The following in-country researchers were responsible for the country reports:
Animesh Roul, Society for the Study of Peace and Conflict, INDIA
Eucharia Kenya, International Centre for Health Interventions and Research in Africa, KENYA.
Iris Hunger, Research Group for Biological Arms Control, GERMANY.
Jack Woodall, Scientists Working Group on Biological and Chemical Weapons Control, BRAZIL AND THE USA.
The research assistance of Jochen Ahlswede (Germany), Jan Hoppe (Germany), Margaret Muturi (Kenya), Angela Woodward (New Zealand), and Anna Zmorzynska (Germany) is gratefully acknowledged.
The Research Group for Biological Arms Control, Germany, coordinated the work programme.
The following people have supported the BioWeapons Monitor continuously by supplying information, comments and advice:
Chandre Gould, Institute for Security Studies, South Africa.
Angela Woodward, Training and Information Centre, New Zealand and the UK.
Marie Chevrier, Scientists Working Group on Biological and Chemical Weapons Control, USA.
The BioWeapons Monitor is a component of the work programme of the BWPP, a global network of civil society actors dedicated to the permanent elimination of biological weapons and of the possibility of their re-emergence.
READ BWPP's Archived publications HERE. http://www.bwpp.org/publications.html