Signatories to the Biological Weapons Convention
The Biological Weapons Convention (BWC), which bans the development, production and stockpiling of biological and toxin weapons, was negotiated from 1968 to 1971 and opened for signature on April 10, 1972. The convention entered into force with 43 parties on March 26,1975, upon ratification by the three depositary states, the United States, the Soviet Union and the United Kingdom.
As of January 31, 1997,140 states-parties have either ratified (R) or acceded (A) to the treaty, as indicated in the table below; 18 additional signatories that have not ratified the convention are also listed. These countries' status with regard to the 1925 Geneva Protocol, which prohibits the use of biological weapons, is also noted. Some states have deposited reservations to the BWC or the Geneva Protocol, and those relevant to the application of the treaty are noted below.
Countries in bold type have been identified by U.S. government sources as having or actively developing biological weapons programs. (See notes a through d for sources.) Members of the Australia Group, an informal export control organization that shares information on the trade in chemical and biological agents, are shown in italics. …