On 11-12 August, the government of Botswana hosted a national workshop to raise awareness on UN Security Council Resolution 1540 (2004), held in partnership with the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) and the 1540 Committee, with the support of the United States and the European Union.
Under UNSCR 1540 (2004), governments are required to take action to prevent non-State actors from acquiring weapons of mass destruction, their related materials, or means of delivery. For the first time after Botswana established its Chemical, Biological, Nuclear, and Radiological (CBNR) Weapons Management Authority in 2018, the workshop brought together various ministries and agencies to discuss their respective mandates, specific roles, and expertise in relation to 1540. The workshop was attended by more than 100 officials as well as members of the Group of Experts of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1540 (2004) (also known as “the 1540 Committee”).
On the first day, representatives of the different agencies responsible for implementing resolution 1540 presented on the status of relevant legislation and regulations in Botswana and facilitated discussions among participants and members from the 1540 Committee’s Group of Experts.
On the second and final day of the workshop, participants engaged in thematic discussions on export controls. They also conducted a line-by-line exercise developing a road map to prepare a National Implementation Action Plan, which lays out a countries’ priorities and plans for implementing the key provisions of resolution 1540.
As an outcome of the workshop, Botswana authorities established an interagency coordination mechanism and agreed to a road map that charts the way forward for developing a National Implementation Action Plan. Additionally, the government ministries identified gaps in the country’s current national legislation and measures that may be addressed through further international assistance in the future.