How can the use of toxic weapons by non-state actors be addressed?

15 February 2016

© Oxford Martin School

Dapo Akande recently addressed the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on the options for prosecuting non-state actors for the use of chemical weapons.

He argued that the use of chemical weapons is a war crime under customary international law and that although the Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) does not include a specific provision which explicitly mentions chemical weapons that individuals may be prosecuted for the use of chemical weapons before the ICC. He also examined the possibility for prosecutions for by other international tribunals, including the possibility of prosecutions in regional or ad hoc tribunals.

The address on 28 January was in the context of the work of OPCW's Sub-Working Group on Non-State Actors mandate to recommend concrete measures that OPCW and States Parties can undertake to further address the threat of the hostile use of toxic chemicals by non-State actors.

Dapo Akande (right) is pictured with Professors Andrew Clapham (Geneva), Carsten Stahn (Leiden) and Ahmet Üzümcü, Director-General of the OPCW.