Global Security Newswire
Daily News on Nuclear, Biological & Chemical Weapons, Terrorism and Related Issues
U.S. House Demands Data on Any Hidden Syrian Chemical Arms
The U.S. House of Representatives is demanding a rundown of any chemical-warfare materials that Syria's government may be trying to hide.
An intelligence authorization bill passed by the chamber on Friday would compel the Obama administration to send Congress an assessment of any "undeclared chemical-weapons stockpile, munitions and facilities" held by Syrian President Bashar Assad's government. The national intelligence director's report -- required within 30 days of the legislation's enactment -- must also address the origin of any hidden agents, potential "gaps" in U.S. knowledge about the Syrian stockpile, and related "denial and deception" tactics by Damascus.
Assad's regime has given other governments custody of all but roughly 7 percent of a 1,300-metric-ton chemical arsenal it acknowledged possessing last year. However, U.S. and other Western intelligence reportedly suggests that the regime remains capable of deploying chemical weapons, including materials it may have concealed from international inspectors.
Damascus has never admitted to tapping warfare chemicals in its 3-year-old war with opposition forces. The government pledged to relinquish its chemical stockpile, though, after sarin nerve agent last year killed hundreds of people in a rebel-controlled neighborhood and raised the prospect of an international military response.
The House-passed authorization bill calls for a "comprehensive assessment of chemical weapon stockpiles in Syria," as well as "a listing of key personnel associated with the Syrian chemical weapons program."
The legislation would require updated reports to be issued every 90 days over an 18-month period.
May 23, 2014
The UNSCR 1540 Resource Collection examines implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540, which requires all states to implement measures aimed at preventing non-state actors from acquiring NBC weapons, related materials, and their means of delivery. It details implementation efforts in all of the regions and countries of the world to-date.
Oct. 31, 2013
This CNS issue brief examines the lessons learned from dismantling Libya and Iraq's chemical weapons programs and what these two cases presage for disarmament in Syria. In particular, this article explores the challenges relating to ensuring material and physical security for both inspectors and the chemical weapons stockpile itself; verifying the accuracy and completeness of disclosed inventories; and developing effective monitoring and verification regimes for the long-term. The conclusion examines recommendations stemming from this analysis.
This article provides an overview of Syria's historical and current policies relating to nuclear, chemical, biological and missile proliferation.