25th Anniversary of the Chemical Weapons Convention: Launch of new research project

Kick-off event at Hamburg State Representation in Berlin

The Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) is one of the most successful disarmament treaties of all time. Almost all states have signed the agreement, and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has verified the destruction of almost all reported chemical weapons stockpiles. Yet, this agreement has increasingly been challenged in recent years. During the Syrian civil war more than 300 chemical weapons uses have been documented. Besides, Russia is suspected of having used chemical weapons against political opponents.

On Friday, 29 April 2022, the IFSH, together with other institutions, launched the new research project and think tank CBWNet to strengthen the norm against chemical and biological weapons – just in time for 25th anniversary of the entry into force of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). The kick-off event took place at Hamburg State Representation in Berlin. About 60 representatives of the Federal Government, the Bundestag, international NGOs and high-ranking OPCW diplomats and experts attended the event which was supported by the Federal Foreign Office.

Over the next four years, scientist of CBWNet will research and identify options on how to control and prohibit chemical and biological weapons more effectively. Dr Oliver Meier, Senior Researcher at the Berlin Office of the Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy at the University of Hamburg (IFSH) explains: “The world is facing fundamental geopolitical changes and with Russia blocking the UN Security Council's inquiry on the chemical weapons attack in Syria, the field of chemical and biological disarmament is facing major challenges. Providing analysis and identifying ways to strengthen these norms against chemical and biological weapons is at the heart of our project.”The joint research project CBWNet is carried out by the Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy (IFSH) at the University of Hamburg (IFSH), which is the consortium leader of CBWNet, the Peace Research Institute Frankfurt (PRIF), the Chair for Public Law and International Law at the University of Gießen and the Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker-Centre for Science and Peace Research at the University of Hamburg (ZNF).

The project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research with almost three million Euros. The IFSH receives about 864,000 Euros.

Contact: cbwnet@ifsh.de, @cbwnet, cbwnet.org