United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540

House of Lords written question – answered on 11 October 2012.

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Photo of Lord Browne of Ladyton Lord Browne of Ladyton Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to help other states to meet their obligations under United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540.

Photo of Baroness Warsi Baroness Warsi Senior Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Jointly with the Department for Communities and Local Government), Senior Minister of State (Department for Communities and Local Government) (Faith and Communities) (also in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

The UK strongly supports UN Security Council Resolution 1540 which requires all UN member states to enforce effective measures against the proliferation of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons, and their means of delivery. We were active in negotiations to renew the resolution in April 2011, helping to secure a new, 10-year mandate for the 1540 Committee and the appointment of a UK expert to the 1540 Group of Experts in June 2012.

We have funded a range of capacity building and legislative assistance programmes to help countries meet their obligations under 1540. These include increasing the role played by regional organisations, promoting the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention intercessional process, preparation for the Chemical Weapons Convention Review Conference in April 2013 and promoting the universality of both these conventions; and promoting ratification of the International Convention on the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism and the (amended) Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material.

The Global Threat Reduction Programme (GTRP), part of the UK's contribution to the G8's Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction, has also worked to improve the assistance matching process and support to the 1540 Committee. The UK programme supports substantial international efforts to secure vulnerable chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear materials and expertise to ensure that they do not fall into the hands of terrorist groups.

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