Porton Down, the Ministry of Defence's chemical and biological research centre, is to play a leading role in verifying that British companies are not illegally making or exporting chemical weapons.
But the Government plans to exempt the Wiltshire centre from legislation making chemical weapons illegal. The only public scrutiny of government departments will be through ministerial accountability to Parliament.
The Government has taken the unusual step of publishing draft legislation before introducing the Bill to Parliament. The deadline for comments on the draft expires this weekend.
However experts say the legislation is not tough enough to measure up to …