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r Risk assessment and management with regard to living modi¬ed organisms
r Institution building including funding laboratories/equipment and developing reg-
ulatory frameworks
r Scienti¬c, technical, and institutional collaboration including mechanisms to share
experiences and provide access to information on opportunities for collaboration
r Human resources development including training in scienti¬c skills and regulatory
r Identi¬cation of living modi¬ed organisms
r Raising awareness and participation by enabling seminars and access to commu-
nication networks
r Data management through participation in the Biosafety Clearinghouse.

borrower implements relevant standards. For example, the World Bank
promotes international regulations on biosafety in developing countries.
It has helped Columbia and India implement biosafety frameworks in
connection with their agricultural sectors and natural resources man-
agement. This project, known as the Capacity Building for Implementa-
tion of the Cartagena Protocol (see Box 9“1), has inspired a multi-country
approach for biosafety implementation by the World Bank in West Africa
and Latin America. The World Bank, already engaged in policies con-
cerned with biosafety, has recognized its role in implementing relevant
treaty obligations:

The World Bank™s role is to assist countries build their capacity to meet
treaty obligations by implementing necessary measures for minimizing
possible environmental and health risks from the transfer, handling, use,
or release of GMOs. . . . It is therefore crucial that assistance continues to
concentrate on building the capacity and knowledge base of all relevant
stakeholders in order to permit countries to make informed choices on how
to assess and manage both the potential risks and the bene¬ts associated
with the use of modern biotechnology.26

United Nations Bioviolence Committee (Security Council
Committee )
The Security Council Committee would be a subsidiary body of the Security
Council, serving to: 1) pursue and investigate suspicious activity related to
bioviolence; 2) respond to Security Council resolutions and other instruc-
tions concerning biothreats; and 3) assist in mitigating the effects of a
bioattack. Attaching the Committee to the Security Council is explicitly
both an empowerment and a constriction. It would draw its power from the
Security Council™s legitimacy, yet it would not deal with concerns that the
Commission or Office could address. The Committee would operate only
in extreme circumstances when States are suspected of being in material
breach of their bioviolence prevention obligations or in the grave instance
of a State-sponsored, terrorist, or criminal bioattack.
The alternative of investing the Commission or the Office with these
responsibilities would entail combining functions that should not mix
and would weaken each body™s respective cooperative functions. When
enforcement action is required, however, cooperation will be a secondary
priority. The principal objective will be to determine if a threat exists and,
if so, to erase it.
Institutionalizing investigative functions in connection with the Secu-
rity Council has important virtues. First would be to internationalize
some intelligence gathering functions. An information gathering capac-
ity linked to the Security Council could use information gathered from
national intelligence agencies along with other data to compile a system-
atic threat assessment. Second, the Committee™s determinations would
carry the Security Council™s legitimacy. According to the U.S. Institute of
Peace, “In certain instances a decision by the United Nations, including
the legally binding decisions of the Security Council under Chapter VII,
may be more acceptable to other governments than pressure from any
single nation or group of nations.”27
There has long been discussion about vesting the UN Secretary-
General with monitoring and investigative capabilities. Notably, this dis-
cussion has focused on the need for action against “alleged violations
of the 1925 Geneva Protocol (banning the use of biological and chem-
ical weapons) or of the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC).”28 The
Secretary-General™s power, however, is limited by the United Nations
Charter. The Secretariat may act in an investigatory capacity only when
“entrusted” by the Security Council (Article 98), although the Secretary-
General may “bring to the attention of the Security Council any matter

which in his opinion may threaten the maintenance of international peace
and security” (Article 99).
The Charter confers on the Security Council the “primary responsibil-
ity for the maintenance of international peace and security” (Article 24).
Only the Security Council has legitimate authority to ensure that prompt
and effective action is taken when needed and to “investigate any dispute,
or any situation which might lead to international friction or give rise to a
dispute . . . likely to endanger the maintenance of international peace and
security” (Article 34).29 Moreover, only the Security Council is authorized
to “call upon the parties concerned to comply with such provisional mea-
sures as it deems necessary or desirable” (Article 40) and to decide what
measures are to be employed to give effect to its decisions. To that end,
the Charter explicitly confers to it the authority to “establish such sub-
sidiary organs as it deems necessary for the performance of its functions”
(Article 29).

United Nations inspectors™ experience investigating alleged WMD pro-
grams offers important lessons. After the ¬rst Gulf War in 1991, the Security
Council established the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM)
to verify Iraq™s compliance with its disarmament obligations by inspecting
Iraq™s biological, chemical, and missile capabilities. UNSCOM pursued this
mandate using information gathered from documents, interviews with
of¬cials, on-site inspections, and sampling and forensic investigations.30
These investigations are credited for impeding Iraq™s reconstruction of its
biological weapons program.31
In late 1999, Security Council Resolution 1284 established the United
Nations Monitoring, Veri¬cation and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC)
to replace UNSCOM. Unlike UNSCOM inspectors who were selected by
States, UNMOVIC inspectors were international civil servants recruited
from a broad geographical base and from international arms control orga-
nizations. They worked directly in accordance with the United Nations
rules on impartiality and professionalism. Moreover, UNMOVIC was
equipped with more powerful tools and broader authority. It could des-
ignate sites for on-site inspections, conduct interviews with Iraqi of¬-
cials, analyze documents, and conduct sampling and aerial surveillance
of designated areas.32 Notably, UNMOVIC continued to exist until 2007,
nearly four years after the withdrawal of inspectors from Iraq. In those
years, UNMOVIC assumed an active epistemic role, hosting seminars and

training sessions, attending workshops and participating in conference
In addition to these inspection bodies, Security Council Resolution
1540 (discussed in Chapter 5) established a Committee to report on how
States are adopting and enforcing laws to prohibit WMD proliferation
to non-State actors. Although the Committee was initially mandated to
endure for “a period of no longer than two years,” Security Council Reso-
lution 1673, adopted in April 2006, extended its mandate for an additional
two years, commanding it to “intensify its efforts” for implementation
and to explore “the availability of programmes which might facilitate the
implementation of Resolution 1540.” Yet, the 1540 Committee is not an
investigatory body, and its focus on all WMD means that it would be ill-
suited to undertake the responsibilities of the proposed Security Council

A New Inspectorate
This book has attempted to highlight why preventing bioviolence is more
complex than other challenges facing the international community, even
more than preventing other types of WMD violence. Thus, while both
UNMOVIC and the 1540 Committee provide important lessons, in their
respective incarnations neither is a substitute for the proposed Committee.
There have been suggestions that UNMOVIC become a permanent
investigatory arm of the Security Council so that its knowledge and experi-
ence could continue to address concerns about noncompliance with inter-
national nonproliferation obligations.33 A report entitled American Inter-
ests and UN Reform recommends that the Security Council “consider the
creation of a permanent nonproliferation inspectorate using UNMOVIC™s
standing expertise in chemical and biological weapons and missile sys-
tems.” UNMOVIC “could be converted into a body able to launch veri-
¬cation and inspection operations on short notice when directed by the
council or UN Secretariat.”34 Another suggestion from Hans Blix is that a
“small standing group under the Security Council would be very useful”:

It would not be an intelligence body. There is plenty of stuff in open sources.
However, it would be as objective as you can be. It would thus be of interest
for Great Powers to check how their intelligence compares and it could
help the [nonpermanent ten], who mostly do not have a great deal of infor-
mation of their own. In addition, it would have a roster of inspectors and
could ˜surge™ quickly, if needed.35

Whether as a new body or as a transformation of an existing body, the
Committee™s role would be to monitor, verify, investigate, and ensure com-
pliance with international measures for preventing bioviolence. It would
report directly to the Security Council and issue recommendations as nec-
essary. Because the Security Council Committee is to act only in extreme
circumstances, it would not have carte blanche authority to investigate any
State it chooses but would act only upon the Security Council™s speci¬c
instructions to investigate activity deemed to threaten international secu-
rity. The Committee must have capacity, expert personnel, and authority
to make country visits if there are suspicions that bioviolence prevention
obligations are being violated. Whether State consent is a prerequisite for
any particular visit is for the Security Council to decide.
Notably, the Committee would both provide information to the Secu-
rity Council about possible bioviolence concerns and receive instructions
from the Security Council that derive from intelligence gathered from
States. The Committee should develop tools to keep information that is pro-
vided to it con¬dential even as it holds consultations and brie¬ngs for inter-
ested States and other relevant international actors. Once a bioviolence
attack happens, the Committee should devote its expertise to helping States
and international organizations mitigate harm, limit the spread of disease,
and apprehend perpetrators. With regard to a severe attack having global
rami¬cations, the Committee can, at the Security Council™s discretion,
coordinate response activities of relevant international organizations such
as the WHO and Interpol as well as the law enforcement and health care
communities of national governments to ensure prompt and effective

A Final Note on Governance
During preparation of this chapter, various experts offered alternative for-
mulations for the governance structure, for example that there should
be only two bodies with a combined Commission-Office and a separate
Committee; or there should be a single body with three subsidiary of¬ces.
It may be readily acknowledged that, within the UN™s intricate structure,
there might well be different ways to arrange relevant responsibilities. What
is important is that the priority of global governance is recognized, that
the primacy of the UN as the venue of that governance is accepted, and
that the multiple security-science-development challenges in preventing
bioviolence are pursued in harmony.

Advancing bioscience offers a future of endless possibilities “ a consum-
mation devoutly to be wished. But it also affords emerging methods of
devastation that are ever harder to control. Today, a few undeterrable peo-
ple could use pathogens to in¬‚ict massive damage, and there are many
reasons to believe that someone will try. These people could be anywhere
on Earth.
Here may be seen the future of challenges to international peace and
security at the beginning of the third millennium: scienti¬c progress inter-
twined with malevolent threats that have consequences for all humanity.
Across scienti¬c disciplines, progressing capabilities “ initially for man-
aging and communicating information, now for medicine, and soon for
industrial applications (nanotechnology) “ improve our lives and yet carry,
inextricably, escalating risks to humanity. These growing threats do not
argue for braking scienti¬c progress, but they undercut notions that new
threats can be effectively addressed with yesterday™s policies.
Our era is witnessing a scienti¬c revolution which calls for a revo-
lution in how we conceive of security. Historically, scienti¬c revolutions
that have prompted critical changes in the means and methods of execut-
ing violence have stimulated new security paradigms, but too often these
paradigms were appreciated only when their obsolete predecessors had
painfully failed. With regard to bioviolence, the consequences of learning
through horrible experience are unacceptable.
This book has discussed approximately three dozen bioviolence pre-
vention measures that could reduce risks of that unacceptable experience.
There are common cords running through these recommendations that
might be conveniently designated as three “I™s”: information, integration,
and international.


Every prevention measure requires better information. It is too easy
for bio-offenders to hide and too hard to identify or interdict their activi-
ties. Comparable gaps of information would be intolerable in the nuclear
sciences or in other domains that pose high risks, and they should not be
tolerated in bioscience. These information gaps are especially striking in
view of the extraordinary progress of information technology that could
enable effective detection capabilities.
The challenges of gathering information deserve substantial thought
and attention. Collecting information can transgress personal and insti-
tutional privacy. Analyzing information can generate conclusions that are
perhaps corrupted by political perspective or that are just wrong. Shar-
ing information can leak critical capabilities to the people who should be
stopped. For these and other reasons, implementing mechanisms for gath-
ering information without carefully designed safeguards could be counter-
productive. Indeed, every measure discussed in this book carries poten-
tial for intrusion into scienti¬c freedom or personal privacy; any measure
could consume vast and unwarranted resources.
An intemperate approach to bioviolence prevention that disregards the
negative rami¬cations of information gathering and analysis would be ill-
advised; discretion is certainly a virtue deserving respect. Yet, it would be
extremely imprudent to wait until bioviolence occurs and then respond as
if the dangers could not have been anticipated. Indeed, a very real concern
throughout this book is that, if there ever is a bioviolence catastrophe,
discretion will be an early victim. Too late to devise reasonable prevention
policies, there will likely be a clamor for ill-considered reactions that drown
out wiser counsel for nuanced approaches. This is why it is vital to establish
the foundations for progressive policies now, before an attack.
The second “I” is integration. Each of this book™s recommendations
offers potential bene¬ts, but none will accomplish much by itself. Each


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