Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction

This page will be regularly updated to feature upcoming events, projects and resources of relevance to the Global Partnership community.

Events, Resources & Projects

Recent and Upcoming Events

Events in the Community

In 2020, a total of 245 Projects valued at ~US$669 million (or €555 million) were implemented by 14 GP Members in multiple countries in every region of the world.  Many additional contributions were measured not by financial means, but by the leadership and diplomatic efforts of members in the areas of threat reduction or non-proliferation.  

Programming Annex

In 2018, a total of 295 Projects valued at close to US$1.1 billion (or €960M) were implemented by 18 GP Partners, in dozens of countries and every region of the world.

In 2021, a total of 181 Projects valued at approximately US$477 million (or GBP£363 million) were reported and implemented by 10 GP Members in multiple countries in every region of the world. Many contributions to the work of the GP are measured not only by financial means, but also by the leadership and diplomatic efforts of its members in the areas of threat reduction or non-proliferation.

Bio-security for the Next Generation online bio-security course

Biological Security Education Handbook: The Power of Team-Based Learning (Bradford University)

Laboratory Bio-safety and Bio-security: Insider and Outsider Threat Online Course. This Public Health Agency of Canada-developed course describes motives, tactics, and indicators of insider & outsider threats and proposes mitigation strategies to reduce bio-security events.

An Analytical Approach: bio-safety and bio-security oversight framework: Canada developed this tool to provide a methodology for regional, national or local authorities to develop, modernize, implement and maintain national bio-safety and bio-security systems.

Prior Assessment Tool for Sustainable Laboratories, which supports efforts to tailor laboratory infrastructure to local risks and resources without compromising biosafety and biosecurity

An Efficient and Practical Approach to Biosecurity, by Denmark’s Centre for Biosecurity and Biopreparedness, offers a practical model that countries can use as a blueprint for establishing or improving national biosecurity systems.

An Introduction to Biopreparedness, by Denmark’s Centre for Biosecurity and Biopreparedness, outlines steps to take in case of a terrorist attack or an accident involving the uncontrolled release of a dangerous pathogen.

BIOLOGICAL SECURITY

INTERPOL “Litmus” video, which highlights early warning indicators of chemical attacks and encourages first responders to report

Nowhere to Hide: The Specter of Chemical Weapons Use in Syria offers information and analysis on the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian conflict, including a comprehensive dataset of confirmed attacks. The Project includes the powerful report "The Last Straw: How Chemical Weapons Impact Women and Break Communities," which highlights the disproportionate impact that chemical weapons have on women and communities in Syria’s ongoing civil war as well as "Assad's Long Reach: The Syrian Arab Air Force at War," which documents the chemical attacks conducted by the Air Force during the decade-long civil war. It also includes a technical report on "Munitions Typology: Chemical Weapons Deployed in the Syrian War". This Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi) project is supported by the Governments of Canada and Germany.  

CHEMICAL SECURITY

The International Experts Group of Biosafety and Biosecurity Regulators (IEGBBR) launched its mobile application “IEGBBR Mobile App of Biosafety, Biosecurity and Dual Use Oversight”. Download the app on a mobile device from the Google Play or Apple App Store (or search for “IEGBBR”). The mobile app is free and available internationally in both English and French. Users can search and contrast desired aspects of the biosafety, biosecurity, or dual-use oversight for any or all of the 11 IEGBBR members (Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Singapore, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States).

The mobile app will serve as a reference tool for countries that aim to develop or strengthen their national biosafety, biosecurity or dual-use oversight. It can remove the necessity for extensive legwork prior to the development and implementation of oversight, and can be used to strengthen compliance with international biosafety and biosecurity commitments.

The Global Partnership has identified “strengthening global mechanisms and capabilities to respond to the deliberate use of biological agents” as a shared priority.  In support of this objective, GP partners are supporting the Implementation Support Unit of the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC) to strengthen Article VII of the BTWC through the development of an “International Bio-Emergency Management Framework for Deliberate Events”.

The SuspectED Smartphone App allows in-field responders and/or investigators in both the human and animal sectors to identify triggers and indicators of emerging and deliberate biological events. Developed by Australia’s Torrens Resilience Institute with support from Canada’s Weapons Threat Reduction Program, the SuspectED App includes detailed guidance on the proper use of PPE, a list of triggers and indicators to assess likelihood of a deliberate event and guidance on the collection and transportation of biological samples.

The Global Partnership is committed to strengthening global mechanisms to respond to the deliberate use of disease, including through support for the United Nations Secretary-General’s Mechanism (UNSGM) for Investigation of Alleged Use of Chemical and Biological Weapons. The United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs has produced a Fact Sheet on the UNSGM, which highlights the scope of the Mechanism and the efforts of GP partners to strengthen it.

As part of a virtual exhibition entitled No Women No Peace, Germany’s Federal Foreign Office highlights several of its GP biosecurity initiatives that contribute to Preventing Conflicts, Averting Crises. Germany’s Women, Peace and Biosecurity efforts, which seek to ensure that women are supported and encouraged to strive for senior positions in biosecurity, include projects on the Promotion of Junior Female Scientists in Biosecurity (with a focus on Georgia), Scholarships for female doctoral students (in Kazakhstan) and Women for Biosecurity (which aims to provide targeted training and support for female biosecurity specialists in Sudan, Tunisia and Morocco)

Canada is supporting a Project, led by the Stimson Center, to develop a new Non-Proliferation Cheminformatics Compliance Tool (NCCT). This Project will build on important work previously undertaken by American University and the Stimson Center, which included the curation of structurally annotated lists of chemical warfare agents and precursors from three key international frameworks and was published in the Journal of Chemical information and Modeling. An overview of this project to develop the NCTT tool, which aims to provide tools to bolster the control of chemical weapons and support the global efforts to rid the world of this category of weapons, was published in Strategic Trade Review.

With support from Canada's Weapons Threat Reduction Program, the OIE-FAO-INTERPOL are working jointly to Build Resilience against Agro-Terrorism and Agro-Crime by strengthening multisectoral capacity and fostering regional and international cooperation. As part of this project, the OIE convened workshops on "Approaches to Improving Sustainable Management of Animal Health Emergencies" (November 2019) and "Tackling Agro-Crime Affecting Animal Health and Welfare" (July 2020). It also produced Guidelines for Simulation Exercises (with the goal of strengthening the capacity of Veterinary Services for preparedness against all hazards that affect animal health and welfare, including bioterrorism).

With support from Canada's Weapons Threat Reduction Program, the World Health Organization (WHO) is taking steps to address challenges posed by dual-use research of concern (DURC). Through the Ensuring Responsible Use of Life Sciences Research initiative, the WHO is working with Member States and partners to limit the risks of DURC through the creation of research oversight mechanisms, frameworks and policies that aim to raise awareness for a range of audiences.

Denmark’s Centre for Biosecurity and Biopreparedness has issued the latest edition of its quarterly newsletter, Biosecurity Insight. This edition includes feature articles on Biological substances with weapons relevance, The challenges of new generation benchtop DNA synthesizers from a biosecurity perspective, International biosecurity collaboration is vital and The Czech attempt to use biological weapons against Nazi-Germany.

Publication of the International Experts Group of Biosafety and Biosecurity Regulators (IEGBBR) 8th Biennial Meeting Report. The report highlights challenges encountered with regulatory biosafety and biosecurity oversight during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the goal to develop reference material that could assist other countries in their pandemic response, based on the knowledge and expertise from IEGBBR member countries.

With Support from the Government of Norway, VERTIC has published an updated legislation survey template for the implementation of the BTWC. This template aims to provide state officials and other relevant stakeholders with a better understanding of the specific implementation measures required by the BTWC. The survey templates are currently available in English, but will be available in Arabic, Russian, French and Spanish in the near future.

With Support from the Government of Norway, VERTIC has published an updated legislation survey template for the implementation of the CWC. This template aims to provide state officials and other relevant stakeholders with a better understanding of the specific implementation measures required by the CWC. The survey templates are currently available in English, but will be available in Arabic, Russian, French and Spanish in the near future.

NUCLEAR & RADIOLOGICAL SECURITY

The ongoing pandemic has highlighted the need for nations to enhance their abilities to prevent, detect, and respond to all manner of biological threats, whether natural, accidental or deliberate. In this context, Canada’s Weapons Threat Reduction Program supported the development of Biosecurity Central, a new publicly available web-based library that helps users find relevant and reliable sources of information for key areas of biosecurity. The site aims to widely disseminate and share knowledge to help advance biosafety and biosecurity. The library is a searchable and filterable database designed to enable ready access to biosafety and biosecurity resources from around the globe, published by governmental, international, and non-governmental organizations.

With support from the government of Norway, UNIDIR has published a report on Back to the Future for Verification in the Biological Disarmament Regime. The report highlights challenges to the long-term sustainability of the BTWC regime and suggests three rectifying strategies to build confidence among states parties. Recommendation include evaluation of existing national compliance and verification tools, development of formal channels to raise and respond to compliance concerns, and the development of a "compliance ecosystem" to strengthen implementation of Article X.

UNODC launched a new website on the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism (ICSANT). The website, which is available in all six UN official languages, is intended to serve as a repository of all available resources and relevant information on the convention.

With support from the Government of Canada, UNODC’s eLearning Module on the International Legal Framework against Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Terrorism is now available in all six UN official languages. The module, a self-paced learning tool, examines the relevant international CBRN counter-terrorism instruments and promotes awareness of the need to adopt and adhere to these instruments as effective tools to prevent terrorism. For registration, please contact unodc-cbrn@un.org.

Projects and Resources