18 August 2008
Security Council

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York





The 1540 Committee (the more common name of the Committee established pursuant to United Nations Security Council resolution 1540 (2004), a subsidiary body of the Security Council) presented its second report to the Security Council today, 18 August, on the status of implementation of weapons of mass destruction-related resolution 1540.  Security Council resolutions 1673 (2006) and 1810 (2008) directed the Committee to “submit to the Security Council a report on compliance with resolution 1540 (2004) through the achievement of the implementation of its requirements”.

In its report, the 1540 Committee identifies a number of specific measures that States have in place to implement resolution 1540, including steps they have taken since April 2006.  The Committee assembled data for each of the 192 United Nations Member States, using only information each State has made available about itself, including reports submitted directly to the 1540 Committee by 155 Member States on their steps to implement the resolution.  This information has enabled the Committee to present a more complete picture of the measures already in place or planned in the near future.  The Committee’s new report reveals that, although States have taken additional measures since the first report of the 1540 Committee in April 2006, further measures need to be taken to implement resolution 1540 in full.

To promote implementation of resolution 1540, the Security Council recently extended the mandate of the 1540 Committee until April 2011 through Security Council resolution 1810 (2008), strengthening the leading role of the United Nations and its Security Council in preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, their means of delivery and related materials, and providing favourable conditions for engaging the international community in more intensive multilateral action, particularly with respect to the matter of capacity-building and sharing lessons learned.  The report, among other recommendations, calls on the 1540 Committee to strengthen its clearing house role for channelling assistance to States in need; increase tailored dialogue with and among States to identify assistance needs and assistance projects to meet them; and promote awareness of, make better use of and consider options for developing existing financial mechanisms in order to build capacity to implement resolution 1540.  To those ends, it should also work more closely with global and regional intergovernmental organizations and arrangements, within and outside the United Nations system, in fostering the sharing of experience, creating forums for discussion and developing innovative mechanisms to achieve implementation of the resolution.  In this regard, the report notes that the Committee has expanded its cooperation with a number of international and other organizations, such as the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the World Customs Organization (WCO), the Organization of American States (OAS), the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional Forum, and the Commonwealth of Independent States.

The report recognizes that full implementation of resolution 1540 by all States requires a long-term commitment by many parts of the international community to the objectives of the resolution, along with a sense of urgency given the gravity of the threat.

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For information media • not an official record