CBWNet Hosted Conference on Norms against Chemical and Biological Weapons in Gießen

The Chair for Public Law and International Law at the University of Giessen hosted an interdisciplinary conference on the interconnectivity of norms against biological and chemical weapons on 23 and 24 October. Along the topical areas of “multinormativity” and “multi-level functionality of regimes,” the conference welcomed experts from the fields of law and political science, as well as practitioners.

Following a welcome address by CBWNet member Prof. Thilo Marauhn, the keynote speech was delivered by German Deputy Ambassador to the OPCW Dr. Jarek Korczynski.

On the first panel Dr. Ralf Trapp and Dr. Detlef Männig discussed the chemical industry’s role in CBW norms, featuring insights from the panelists´ long experience in this field.

The second panel focused on national implementation with contributions by Thomas Brown on VERTIC´s role in supporting states in this process and by Dr. Barry de Vries, who presented a comprehensive study on national implementation legislation. Dr Alexander Kelle completed the panel by discussing the challenges to state-level norms against chemical weapons use by non-state actors.

The second day of the conference kicked off with a presentation by Prof. Robert Lawless on practicable questions regarding the future of the CBW regimes and an analysis by Csilla Bertha of the capacity of the same frameworks to grapple with technological developments.

The fourth panel covered the relevance of the CBW regimes for targeted assassinations, presented by Dr. Glenn Cross, and a legal evaluation of the implied powers argument as a basis for the OPCW´s investigative mechanisms by Kristoffer Burck.

The last panel contained presentations by Ankit Malhotra on how the global prohibition regimes could be enforced and by Dr. Elisabeth Hoffberger-Pippan on interactions between the CBW taboo and the European Human Rights framework. Lastly, Dr. Craig Eggett and Dr. Sarah Thin jointly presented their research on how the conventional prohibitions against CBW interact with general international law.

In his concluding remarks Prof. Dr. Eric Myjer emphasized the need for continued discourse between the legal and political sciences to strengthen the norms against chemical and biological weapons.

The contributions to this conference will be collected in an edited volume and recordings of the individual sessions can be provided upon request by barry.de-vries@recht.uni-giessen.de.