New York, 15 November 2002 - Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on the Fifth Review Conference of the Biological Weapons Convention

The Secretary-General welcomes the positive outcome of the resumed session of the Fifth Review Conference of the Biological Weapons Convention, which concluded its work today in Geneva.

The Conference decided to hold annual meetings of the States Parties in the next three years leading to the 2006 Review Conference, to address national measures to implement the Biological Weapons Convention and to control dangerous pathogens, as well as better international response to, and investigation of, the alleged use of biological weapons, and improved surveillance of infectious diseases.

These agreed steps constitute an encouraging development in the process of strengthening the Biological Weapons Convention.