This annotated chronology is based on the data sources that follow each entry. Public sources often provide conflicting information on classified military programs. In some cases we are unable to resolve these discrepancies, in others we have deliberately refrained from doing so to highlight the potential influence of false or misleading information as it appeared over time. In many cases, we are unable to independently verify claims. Hence in reviewing this chronology, readers should take into account the credibility of the sources employed here.
Inclusion in this chronology does not necessarily indicate that a particular development is of direct or indirect proliferation significance. Some entries provide international or domestic context for technological development and national policymaking. Moreover, some entries may refer to developments with positive consequences for nonproliferation.
The CIA releases its semi-annual Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions for the period 1 January to 30 June 2001 in which the CIA charges that, "Iran, a Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) States party, already has manufactured and stockpiled chemical weapons — including blister, blood, choking, and probably nerve agents, and the bombs and artillery shells to deliver them. During the first half of 2001, Tehran continued to seek production technology, training, expertise, equipment, and chemicals from entities in Russia and China that could be used to help Iran reach its goal of having an indigenous nerve agent production capability." In addition, the report states, "Iran remains one of the most active countries seeking to acquire WMD ...technology from abroad. In doing so, Tehran is attempting to develop a domestic capability to produce various types of weapons--chemical, biological, and nuclear--and their delivery systems." The report alleges that Iran received additional assistance in its efforts from entities in North Korea, Russia and Western Europe.
--Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions for the period 1 January to 30 June 2001, (Washington, DC: Office of the Director of Central Intelligence, 2002), <https://www.cia.gov/library/reports/archived-reports-1/jan_jun2001.htm>.
6 January 2002
Former Iranian president and current head of the influential Expediency Council, Ali Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani, addresses a ceremony commemorating outstanding Iranian soldiers and proclaims, "Iran was not and would not try to acquire unconventional weapons." He added, "Iran never wanted to confront its opponents with nuclear or chemical bombs."
--"Vision of the Islamic Republic of Iran," Network 1 (Tehran), 6 January 2002, in "TV Program Summary;" FBIS, Document IAP20020106000072, 6 January, 2002.
9 January 2002
Speaking to IRNA, former Iranian President Ali Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani is quoted as saying, "Although Iran today is one of the leading arms makers in the world, it has never been after non-conventional weapons and will never do so." Rafsanjani further states, "Iran has never thought of, and will never think of, using nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against another nation." [Note: These statements of 6 and 9 January are likely a response to the latest CIA report released to the US Congress this week titled "Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions, 1 January Through 30 June 2001" (see 2000-2001 chronology).]
--Anwar Iqbal, "Iran Seeks Weapons of Mass Destruction," United Press International, 9 January 2002.
24 January 2002
The Bush administration imposes sanctions on several Chinese firms allegedly for selling CBW components to Iran. According to a US State Department statement, "The penalties were imposed for the transfer to Iran since January 1, 1999 of sensitive equipment and technology controlled by the Australia Group." One unnamed US intelligence official reportedly told the Washington Times that in April 2001, US intelligence tracked one of the Chinese shipments of chemical-related goods as it made its way to Iran. The three firms penalized by the sanctions are Liyang Chemical Equipment, the China Machinery and Electric Equipment Import and Export Company, as well as Mr. Q.C. Chen. One of those firms produces glass-lined equipment; however, the reports did not mention if such equipment was transferred to Iran. The State Department statement goes on to say that "Q.C. Chen is already subject to US sanctions. In May 1997, he was among seven Chinese entities sanctioned, pursuant to the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991, for knowingly and materially assisting Iran's chemical weapons program through the transfer of chemical weapons precursor chemicals and/or chemical weapons-related production equipment and technology. These sanctions currently remain in place." The statement continues by claiming that the activities of Q.C. Chen and other Chinese entities have been brought to the attention of the Chinese government on numerous occasions, and that the Chinese government was informed in advance of the decision to place further sanctions on Mr. Chen and others.
--US Department of State, Office of the Spokesman, "Nonproliferation Sanctions Imposed on Chinese Entities," 25 January 2002, <http://usinfo.state.gov/topical/pol/arms/02012503.htm>; US Department of State, "Public Notice 3893," Federal Register, 24 January 2002, vol. 67, no. 16, p. 3528; Bill Gertz, "US Hits China with Sanctions over Arms Sales," Washington Times, 25 January 2002; "US Slaps New Sanctions on Chinese Firms," Middle East Newsline, 27 January 2002.
25 January 2002
China demands a swift end to the US "practice" of sanctioning Chinese companies. In an official statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, China proclaims that it "opposes countries that develop chemical weapons and does not aid countries to develop their chemical weapons....China prohibits the export of sensitive chemical products and their related production technology and equipment." No mention was made of the specific companies sanctioned.
--Ray Cheung and Agencies, "Drop Sanctions, Beijing Tells US," South China Morning Post (Hong Kong), 26 January 2002; in "PRC Urges US to Lift Sanctions on Firms Accused of Selling Iran Biochemical Materials;" FBIS, Document CPP20020126000046, 26 January 2002.
29 January 2002
In his first State of the Union address, US President George W. Bush calls Iran, Iraq, and North Korea an "axis of evil" and accuses them of supporting terrorism and seeking chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons that could threaten the United States.
--President George W. Bush, "State of the Union Address," Office of the Press Secretary, 29 January 2002, <http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/01/20020129-11.html>.
30 January 2002
Iran rejects statements made by US President Bush in his State of the Union address, denouncing them as "arrogant" and as a desire for hegemony. Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi states, "We, besides rejecting American accusations, believe that the world will not tolerate US hegemonic ambitions and believe Mr. Bush would do better by presenting proof of his accusation....The Islamic Republic of Iran considers these remarks as interference in its internal affairs." Mr. Kharrazi believes that "Bush is intending to divert public opinion from the Middle East issues by raising up a new subject and thereby pave [sic] the ground for the US to continue support for Israel in suppressing the Palestinian nation." Kharrazi added, "[t]he American president had better back up his assertions with evidence instead of repeating old and unfounded claims."
--"Kharrazi Rejects Bush's 'Arrogant Statements on Iran," IRNA, 30 January 2002; "Iran, Iraq, North Korea Dismiss Bush Accusations," New York Times, 30 January 2002.
3 February 2002
Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi, in a letter to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, rebuts allegations made by US President Bush during his State of the Union Address. Kharrazi notes, "Iran does not seek weapons of mass destruction and, unlike the US ally in this region, is a party to the NPT, CWC, and BWC and has signed the CTBT. As the only victim of weapons of mass destruction in the last generation, Iranian people have felt the horror of these weapons and are determined to ensure that no people will have to go through the same agony....It must be underlined that, unlike the United States, weapons of mass destruction have no place in Iran's defense doctrine. Iran is fully committed to observing all relevant international instruments on prohibition of such weapons, and its compliance has been repeatedly verified by the relevant international organizations. At the same time, Iran insists and vigorously pursues its inalienable right to develop its nuclear, chemical, and biological industries for peaceful purposes. This right is guaranteed in all relevant international instruments, and the deliberate campaign by the United States to arbitrarily deprive Iran of this right is a further violation of these regimes." Kharrazi further states that he believes that the Bush administration seeks to weaken these regimes, so that it remains "unhindered not only in developing and proliferating such weapons but more dangerously in leveling self-serving accusations against others."
--Dr. Kamal Kharrazi, "Press Release," Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the UN, 4 February 2002.
12 February 2002
US Secretary of State Colin Powell, in testimony before the US Senate Budget Committee, tries to explain President Bush's "axis of evil" statement with regard to Iran. Secretary Powell states that although the United States is wary of Iran's continued efforts to develop WMD and the means to deliver them, "[w]e want the best for the people of Iran," and "we have offered the Iranians dialogue." Powell states further that the United States is looking for peace, not war, but "you don't find peace by sticking your head in the sand and ignoring evil where it exists."
--Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, testimony at Budget Hearing Before the Senate Budget Committee, 12 February 2002, <http://www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2002/7957pf.htm>.
16 February 2002
Iran successfully tests a new version of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), the Muajar-4 (Mohajer 4, also called Hodhod--"a hooded bird") is advertised by Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Industry Company, Havapeimasazi Iran, or HESA, as intended for communications or electronic warfare, which is a potential CBW delivery platform. The test was attended by Iranian Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani.
--"Iran Presents New Military UAV," Middle East Newsline, 18 February 2002; "Iran Airshow News," Air Forces Monthly, 22 January 2003, p. 22.
9 March 2002
A classified US DOD report detailing the US Nuclear Posture Review is leaked to the press. The report, presented to Congress on 8 January 2002, calls for the military to prepare contingency plans to use nuclear weapons against a potential target list of seven states, including Iran. The weapons would ostensibly be deployed in retaliation for a nuclear, biological, or chemical attack emanating from one of the aforementioned countries. While the US government is criticized for placing such a high importance on nuclear weapons in its strategic doctrine, the Bush administration counters that the new nuclear posture seeks to limit the chances of nuclear weapon use by enhancing and reinforcing the US nuclear deterrent.
--Paul Richter, "US Works Up Plan for Using Nuclear Arms," Los Angeles Times, 9 March 2002; David G. Savage, "Nuclear Plan Meant to Deter," Los Angeles Times, 11 March 2002.
10 March 2002
Iran condemns the leaked DOD nuclear posture report immediately. Former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani claims that the United States is hoping to intimidate other states. He states, "[t]he intimidating atmosphere created by the United States influences countries' security. In this atmosphere adventurers will be encouraged to create planned insecurity in the countries."
--Roula Khalaf and Robert Cottrell, "Syria, Libya Broaden the 'Axis of Evil'," Financial Times, 11 March 2002, p. 3.
19 March 2002
In testimony before the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Assistant Secretary of State for Intelligence and Research Carl Ford states that Iran has "manufactured and stockpiled chemical weapons--including blister, blood, choking, and probably nerve agents, and the bombs and artillery shells to deliver them. Tehran continues to seek considerable production technology, training, expertise, equipment and chemicals from entities in Russia and China that could be used to help Iran reach its goal [of] an indigenous nerve agent production capability."
--US Department of State, "State Official Details Threat of Chemical, Biological Weapons; Says CBW Pose Difficult Intelligence Problem," 19 March 2002, <http://uninfo.state.gov/regional/nea/sasia/text/0319ford.htm>.
16 April 2002
US Assistant Secretary of State for Nonproliferation Issues John Wolf states that Iran is developing its WMD and missile programs with help from North Korea, China, and Russia. He also states that the United States is working to prevent Russian scientists that are assisting in the research and development efforts of CBW programs in countries like Iran.
--US Department of State, "Real 'Axis of Evil' Exists, State Official Says," International Information Program, 16 April 2002, <http://usinfo.state.gov.topical/pol/arms/02041601.htm>.
17 April 2002
The daily Middle East News Line (Middle East Newsline) states that the United States claims Iran has begun an effort to sell missiles and equipment necessary for making CBW to its friends and allies throughout the Middle East and North Africa. Middle East Newsline appears to attribute the information to the briefing given by US Assistant Secretary of State for Nonproliferation John Wolf to members of the media on 16 April 2002. In his statement (above), however, Wolf did not claim that Iran, or any other country, markets CBW components or other materials to third countries. [Note: The Middle East Newsline only cites "US officials" when it makes its claim about Iran. However, because the article devotes a significant amount of time to the briefing given by Wolf, the reader is led to believe the information came from Wolf.]
--"Missile Rogues Seek to Become WMD Exporters," Middle East Newsline, 17 April 2002.
24 April 2002
Jane's Strategic Weapon Systems releases its updated Land-Based Ballistic Missiles Guide, which claims that Iran possesses two liquid-fueled ballistic missiles capable of launching chemical CW warheads. The Scud-B variant Shehab 2 missile and the North Korean Nodong variant Shehab-3 are capable of reaching distances up to 300km and 1,300km, respectively. A third CW-capable missile with an estimated range of 2,000km, the Shehab-4, is currently under development and expected to be operational in 2003.
--"Land-Based Ballistic Missiles," Jane's Strategic Weapon Systems, 24 April 2002, <http://www.janes.com>.
29 April 2002
Austrian Defense Minister Herbert Scheibner is briefed on chemical defense reshipments by Iranian experts as he attends an expo in Tehran highlighting the achievements of the Iranian defense industry.
--"Austrian Defense Minister Visits Defense Industries Exhibition," IRNA, 29 April 2002; FBIS, document IAP20020429000111, 29 April 2002.
6 May 2002
In an address before the Foundation in Washington, DC, Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security, John Bolton, states that Iran has a BW program that is "complemented by an even more aggressive chemical warfare program."
--John Bolton, "Beyond the Axis of Evil: Additional Threats from Weapons of Mass Destruction," Heritage Foundation Lecture, 6 May 2002.
9 May 2002
It is reported that Iran has large stockpiles of CW spread throughout the country.
--"What Should We Make of Iran? Does it Merit a Warm Reassessment or a Cold Hard Look," Jane's Special Reports, 9 May 2002.
9 May 2002
US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher announces that in the coming days, Armenian, Chinese, and Moldovan entities will be sanctioned pursuant to the Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2000. The sanctions will last two years. Boucher refuses to state that the sanctions involve WMD, commenting only that the items transferred to Iran were on multilateral control lists.
--State Department Spokesman Richard Boucher, "State Department Noon Briefing Transcript," US Department of State, 9 May 2002.
13 May 2002
Unnamed Western diplomatic sources claim that some US officials are holding secret talks with the Iranians, but that the Bush administration is divided over its Iran policy. Some cabinet-level officials desire to see improved relations with Iran and cite as evidence of Iran's potential its recent intelligence assistance to the United States since September 11. However, other officials state that Iran's "strategic weapons programs" are cause for concern and have priority as far as US policy is concerned.
--"Evidence Grows of Secret US-Iran Talks," Middle East Newsline, 13 May 2002.
13 May 2002
The European Union's General Affairs Council states on 13 May 2002, "The Council noted that broad agreement existed on the substance and objectives of the overall approach for developing relations with Iran, as well as commercial matters these should include a serious dialogue on questions such as terrorism, proliferation, and regional stability. It accordingly instructed the Permanent Representatives Committee to examine all the relevant elements put forward in the debate so that the General Affairs Council is in a position to take a decision at its June session.
--General Affairs Council Statement, "Relations with Iran," European Union External Relations, 13 May 2002, <http://europa.eu.int/comm/external_relations/iran/intro/gac.htm>.
14 May 2002
It is reported that the European Union (EU) delayed acting on the Trade and Cooperation Agreement with Iran yesterday, "amid disagreements within the EU over how to confront Iran's missile and weapons of mass destruction programs." [Note: The text of the EU's General Affairs Council on 13 May 2002 was, "The Council noted that broad agreement existed on the substance and objectives of the overall approach for developing relations with Iran; as well as commercial matters these should include a serious dialogue on questions such as terrorism, proliferation and regional stability. It accordingly instructed the Permanent Representatives Committee to examine all the relevant elements put forward in the debate so that the General Affairs Council is in a position to take a decision at its June session.]
--"Iranian WMD Expected to be Marginal in Summit," Middle East Newsline, 14 May 2002; General Affairs Council Statement, "Relations with Iran," European Union External Relations, 13 May 2002, <http://europa.eu.int/comm/external_relations/iran/intro/gac.htm>.
16 May 2002
The Federal Register announces today that two Armenian, two Moldovan, and eight Chinese entities have been sanctioned under the Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2002 for transferring equipment and/or technology controlled by multilateral export control regimes. The companies sanctioned are Lizen Open Joint Stock Company and Armen Sargsian of Armenia; Liyang Chemical Equipment Company, Zibo Chemical Equipment Plant, China National Machinery and Electric Equipment Import and Export Company, Wha Cheong Tai Company, China Shipbuilding Trading Company, China Precision Machinery Import/Export Corporation, China National Aero-Technology Import and Export Corporation, and Mr. Q.C. Chen of China; and Cuanta SA and Mikhail Pavlovich Vladov of Moldova. Liyang Chemical and Q.C. Chen were both previously sanctioned on 24 January 2002 as well.
--US Department of State, "Public Notice 4020," Federal Register, 16 May 2002, vol. 67, no. 95, pp. 34983-34984.
17 May 2002
In an article regarding possible Cuban assistance to Iran's BW program, Middle East Newsline quotes unnamed US officials as stating that Iran has developed CW and is seeking assistance for BW. Middle East Newsline also states that a "senior [Bush] administration official...said Washington has discussed allegations that Moscow is helping Iran's ballistic missile and chemical weapons program as well as building a nuclear infrastructure that could be used for the production of chemical weapons."
--"Cuba Markets WMD Technology to Iran, Libya," Middle East Newsline, 17 May 2002.
20 May 2002
In an article primarily concerning the 16 May 2002 sanctions placed on Armenian, Moldovan, and Chinese entities, Middle East Newsline cites unnamed US officials as stating that Q.C. Chen and "the Chinese firms are believed [to be] involved in a project to weaponize Iranian Shihab-3 [Shehab-3] intermediate-range missiles with chemical and biological components."
--"US Lists Firms Selling WMD to Iran," Middle East Newsline, 20 May 2002.
31 May 2002
An Israeli political commentator says it is unlikely Iran is close to making a chemical warhead with an advanced fuse for their missiles.
--Ze'ev Schiff, "Iran: Clear and Present Danger," Ha'aretz (Tel Aviv), 31 May 2002; in "Israeli Pundit Comments on Iranian Missile Threat, Dangers from Lebanon," FBIS, Document GMP20020531000089, 31 May 2002.
A report states that Zibo Chemical Equipment Plant (PRC), one of the companies sanctioned by the United States on 16 May 2002, was probably included on that list for transferring CW-related equipment to Iran.
--Alex Wagner, "Washington Levies Sanctions for WMD-Related Transfers to Iran," Arms Control Today (June 2002), <www.armscontrol.org/act/2002_06/wmdjune02.asp>.
A London-based daily, the World Tribune, reports that "Libya has signed a $13.5 billion weapons deal with Iran for ballistic missiles with chemical warheads and the training to deploy and operate them." According to the report, the information came from an article in the Berlin-based Die Welt, which cites, "Western intelligence sources." The original article in Die Welt, however, says nothing about chemical warheads being part of this arms deal contract. Rather, it only mentions WMD and CW as an interest and capability that Libya has built up over time. While it is possible that the London article might have obtained information from its own intelligence sources, it appears that the German report is the source of the claims.
--"Report: Libya Goes Ballistic in $13.5 Billion Deal with Iran," World Tribune, 21 August 2002, <http://www.worldtribune.com>; Jacques Schuster, "Teheran Bildet Libysche Armee an Scud-Raketen aus" [Tehran Sets up Libya's Army with Scud Missiles], Die Welt (Berlin), 19 August 2002, <http://www.welt.de>.
9 June 2002
An investigative journalist claims that Britain is selling Iran chemical warfare technology, primarily toxic chemical precursors. [Note: CNS Graduate Research Assistant Ben Heath contacted the journalist directly for more information, but Mr. Mackay was unable to supply any specific details or further information. He did not know what types of chemicals were shipped, who shipped them, or who they were intended for.]
--Neil Mackay, "Britain's Chemical Bazaar; Investigation: The UK Sells the Components of Chemical Weapons to Some of the Worst Regimes in the World," Sunday Herald (Glasgow), 9 June 2002.
17 June 2002
The EU General Affairs Council announced today that it will move forward with a Trade and Cooperation Agreement with Iran. Middle East Newsline had suggested in May that the decision was delayed due to concerns over Iran's WMD programs. However, in today's statement, the Council only mildly mentioned WMD by stating, "Regarding non-proliferation, the EU encourages Iran to sign, ratify, and fully implement relevant international instruments."
--General Affairs Council Statement, "Relations with Iran," European Union External Relations, 13 May 2002, <http://europa.eu.int/comm/external_relations/iran/intro/gac.htm>.
18 June 2002
During a question-and-answer session today at the US State Department's Noon Briefing, spokesman Richard Boucher answers a question regarding the US stance on the EU's decision to further ties with Iran: "We have maintained an ongoing discussion and dialogue with the European Union about policy towards Iran. This is a subject of frequent discussion. We have also made quite clear in this discussion our concerns, our grave concerns about Iranian behavior. That includes Iran's support for international terrorism, Iran's opposition to the Middle East peace process, its pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and the means to deliver them through ballistic missile development, and Iran's human rights record."
--Richard Boucher, "Daily Press Briefing Index," US Department of State, 18 June 2002, <http://usinfo.state.gov.regional/nea/sasia/
22 June 2002
A powerful earthquake strikes northwest Iran today in the Qazvin province. The province is reportedly home to an Indian-built CW facility producing the nerve agent precursor phosphorous pentasulfide. Unnamed US officials claim the plant is a major CW facility. One report indicates that "the Iranian CW infrastructure was built as a plant for the production of pesticides in the late 1980s. Iran's main CW production facility is located at Damghan with other plants located in Isfahan and Parchin."
--"Iranian Earthquake Rocks CW Facilities," Middle East Newsline, 23 June 2002.
24 June 2002
It is reported that "the United States suspects that one or more Iranian chemical weapons facilities could have been damaged or destroyed" in the 22 June 2002 earthquake that struck Iran. Allegedly, "the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, responsible for the nation's WMD programs, were rushed to Qazvin to assess the damage of the earthquake to strategic facilities in the province. Army troops were also sent to help deal with any damage of the CW installations." Unnamed Iranian MPs reportedly raised concerns about the safety of these CW facilities, especially one located in Pasdaran.
Unnamed US intelligence officials were cited as stating that the facilities in Qazvin produce nerve gas and other CW. The largest facility is alleged to have been completed in 1988 under the guise of a pesticide production facility. Unnamed sources suspect there are CW installations in Damghan and Parchin as well. Allegedly operational in 1989, these facilities were designed to produce agents to be placed on warheads.
--"US Suspects Iranian CW Facility Damaged in Quake," Middle East Newsline, 24 June 2002.
26 June 2002
Speaking before a meeting of NATO's North Atlantic Council today, Mossad Director Ephraim Halevy states that Iran joined the CWC solely to develop a civilian chemical infrastructure that could be converted quickly to produce VX nerve gas.
--"Mosad Chief on Nuclear Threat from Iran, Iraq, Syria; Terror Threat," Yedi'ot Aharonot (Tel Aviv), 28 June 2002, p. 7; FBIS, Document GMP20020628000151, 28 June 02.
9 July 2002
During testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, US Secretary of State Colin Powell allegedly reports that the United States is making progress in its efforts to prevent Russia from assisting Iran in its quest for WMD. [Note: Actual text of this statement could not be found.]
--"US Claims Progress with Russia in Halting Iranian WMD," Middle East Newsline, 10 July 2002.
19 July 2002
US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher says that ten entities will be sanctioned under the Iran-Iraq Arms Nonproliferation Act of 1992 and/or the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991. Two of the entities will be sanctioned "for knowingly and materially contributing to Iran's chemical weapons program." Eight of the entities have transferred goods to Iran, including to Iran's CW program. The other two contributed to either Iran's or Iraq's CW or advanced conventional weapons programs.
--"State Department Noon Briefing Transcript," US Department of State, 19 July 2002, <http://uninfo.state.gov/topical/pol/
19 July 2002
Eight of the companies are Chinese state-owned firms, according to US State Department officials speaking to the Washington Times on conditions of anonymity. The officials say that some companies have sold Iran advanced conventional weaponry while others have sold CBW equipment.
--Bill Gertz, "US Penalizes 8 Chinese Firms," Washington Times, 19 July 2002.
24 July 2002
The US government imposes sanctions on eight Chinese companies, one Chinese individual, and one Indian individual for allegedly helping Iran and Iraq purchase advanced conventional weapons and to develop CW programs. The companies and individuals sanctioned under both the Iran-Iraq Arms Nonproliferation Act of 1992 and the Arms Export Control Act and the Export Control Act of 1979 as amended by the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 are Jiangsu Yongli Chemicals and Technology Import and Export Corporation, China Machinery and Equipment Import Export Corporation, China National Machinery and Equipment Import Export Corporation, CMEC Machinery and Electric Equipment Import Export Company, CMEC Machinery and Electrical Import Export Company, China Machinery and Electric Equipment Import Export Company, and Wha Cheong Tai Company. The Chinese individual sanctioned is Q.C. Chen, who has been repeatedly sanctioned since 1997. The entities sanctioned only under the Iran-Iraq Nonproliferation Act of 1992 include China Shipbuilding Trading Company and Indian national Hans Raj Shiv.
--US Department of State, "US Sanctions Chinese and Indian Entities for Proliferation Violations," Office of the Spokesman, Richard Boucher, 24 July 2002, <http://uninfo.state.gov/regional/ea/uschina/
25 July 2002
Reportedly, all but two of the companies recently sanctioned by the US government were caught selling advanced conventional goods to Iran, such as high-speed catamaran missile boats and anti-ship cruise missiles, and not CBW components. The other two cases allegedly involved BW-related goods. [see 24 July 2002]
--Bill Gertz, "Firms in Arms Sales to Iran Identified," Washington Times, 26 July 2002.
29 July 2002
In a press conference with the Iranian foreign minister, EU Foreign Policy Chief Javier Solana states that, even with the recent decision by the EU to widen trade and cooperation with Iran, "EU-Iran relations can never reach their full potential if we do not eliminate problems that hamper such a positive development ...One [of these problems] is nonproliferation/acquisition of weapons of mass destruction."
--Dr. Javier Solana, "Statement at the Press Conference with Foreign Minister Kharrazi," European Union Foreign and Security Policy, 29 July 2002, <http://ue.eu.int.pressdata/EN/declarations/71663.pdf>.
29 July 2002
In testimony before the US Congress today, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Vann Van Diepen states that the CWC has "helped reduce the threat from chemical weapons, resulting in international disclosure of chemical weapons in India, China, and Iran." Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Marshall Billingslea states, "both Iran and Syria themselves have robust chemical warfare programs and both are exploring biological weapons. Both countries can deliver these weapons by a variety of means, via short-range missile systems such as Scuds or by artillery shells, and Iran is making strides in developing the Shahab-3 medium-range missile and longer-range systems."
--"Hearing of the International Security, Proliferation and Federal Services Subcommittee of the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee," Federal News Service, 29 July 2002.
18 August 2002
Anonymous former US military officers reveal that the United States continued to provide Iraq with military assistance through 1988--even after the Halabja massacre--even when "American intelligence agencies knew that Iraqi commanders would employ chemical weapons in waging the decisive battles of the Iran-Iraq War...."
--Patrick E. Tyler, "Officers Say US Aided Iraq in War Despite Use of Gas," New York Times, 18 August 2002, <http://www.nytimes.com>; "Report: US Overlooked Iraq Poison Gas," Washington Times (United Press International), 18 August 2002, <http//asp.washtimes.com>.
22 August 2002
Top Iraqi Kurdish officials from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) accuse the terrorist group Ansat al Islam (reportedly linked to Al Qaida) of conducting experiments with chemical weapons in northeastern Iraq. The group is reported to have ties to conservative elements within the Iranian government. Also the group reportedly receives weapons from Iran in an effort to pressure the PUK not to negotiate with the United States.
--Ze'ev Schiff, "Al Qaeda Tested Chemical Weapons," Canadian Jewish News, 26 September 2002, p. 34; "Al Qaida may be Planning Chemical Attack; Iraqi Kurdish Officials says Radicals Linked to Terror Group are Experimenting," Guelph Mercury, 22 August 2002, p. A11.
10-14 September 2002
An Iranian medical team trained in responding to chemical weapons participates in the first Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) exercise on the delivery of assistance (ASSISTEX I) in Zadar, Croatia. The exercise's purpose is to evaluate the level of alertness of the OPCW in dealing with a scenario where assistance is required in the event of a State Party being exposed to a chemical weapons attack. Approximately 15 States Parties, 900 personnel and 100 metric tons of equipment are involved in executing this planned exercise.
--First Exercise on Delivery of Assistance by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons Commences, Press release #56, Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, 10 September 2002, <http://www.opcw.org/html/global/press_releases/
2k2/PR56_2002.html>; "Iran, European Countries Participate in Chemical Weapons' Exercises in Croatia," BBC Worldwide Monitoring, 13 September 2002.
10 October 2002
At a meeting at the OPCW in The Hague, Iranian Foreign Ministry Director-General Amir Hoseyn Zamaninia calls for an international implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). He also states that the OPCW has made great achievement since its implementation in 1997 and serves as a model for multinational cooperation. At the conference, Iran is also elected vice-president of the Asian states that are parties to the CWC.
--"Iran Seeks Implementation of Chemical Weapons Convention," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 10 October 2002, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
11-13 October 2002
Iranian troops engage in a three day military exercise south of Tehran. The focus of the exercise is defense against chemical attack. Activities include confronting chemical strikes, helping the injured and decontaminating areas exposed to chemical weapons. The exercise which is attended by the head of the Expediency Council, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, is characterized as demonstrating Iranian capabilities so as to deter attacks.
--"Iran's army Prepares to Confront Eventual Chemical Strike," Agence France Presse, 13 October 2002, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
14 October 2002
Baqiatallah Medical Sciences University in Tehran holds a meeting on the medical defenses for chemical weapons. Participants in the meeting were introduced to the latest discoveries in this field.
--"Iran: Meeting on Medical Defence Against Chemical Weapons Held," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 14 October 2002, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
14-17 October 2002
The fourth Annual Course on Medical Aspects of Defense against Chemical Weapons is taken by 14 participants from 12 Member States in Tehran, the Islamic Republic of Iran. This was the latest in a series of courses that make available to OPCW member states the experience of Iranian physicians and facilities associated with the treatment of victims of chemical warfare, and that provide medical personnel from Member States with a unique opportunity to examine and learn from actual victims of chemical weapons as well as to exchange information with Iranian physicians.
--OPCW Annual Report on Activities in 2002 C-8/5, Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, 22 October 2003, p. 18, <http://www.opcw.org/docs/c805.pdf>.
18 December 2002
Italian authorities seize 40 tons of morpholine, a chemical that could be used to manufacture chemical weapons. The chemical was seized on a ship that was chartered by the state-owned Iranian company Iran Shipping Lanes. The shipment originated in Antwerp and was to go to Tripoli. Libya legitimately imports approximately 15,000 metric tons of morpholine annually for use by its oil industry.
--"Belgian Firm's Role in Chemical Weapons Precursor's Seizure in Italy Viewed," Brussels Le Soir (in French), 17 January 2003, FBIS document EUP20030117000024, <http//:www.fbis.gov>.
11 February 2003
Testifying before the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, Vice-Admiral Lowell E. Jacoby, states that Iran “maintains a stockpile of chemical warfare agents and may have weaponized some of them into artillery shells, mortars, rockets, and aerial bombs.”
--Vice-Admiral Lowell E. Jacoby, Current and Projected National Security Threats to the United States, Statement for the Record before the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, 11 February 2003, p. 12, <http://intelligence.senate.gov/hearings.cfm? hearingid=2197&witnessId=5801>.
In Iran the Sasadja Moavenate Bazargani company receives a shipment of 120 metric tons of dimethylamine from the south African company African Amines. The company has been placed on WMD end-user watch lists by the German and Japanese governments and is suspected of involvement in Iranian missile programs. Dimethylamine can be used as a precursor for the nerve agent tabun (GA) or missile fuel. Dimethylamine also has a wide range of legitmate commercial uses including the production of detergents and pharmaceuticals.
--"How Sasol firm sold WMD chemicals to Iran," Mail and Guardian Online, 18 February 2005, <http://www.mg.co.za>; "RAS: Oil-From-Coal Company Affiliate Reportedly Exported WMD Chemicals to Iran," FBIS document AFP20050218000095, 18 February 2005, <http//:www.fbis.gov>.
21 March 2003
Hossein Panahi-Azar, Iran's ambassador to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemicals Weapons (OPCW), is elected as deputy head of the executive council of the OPCW.
--"Iran: Envoy Elected Deputy Head of Chemical Weapons ban Organization," BBC Worldwide Monitoring, 21 March 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
23 March 2003
A committee set up to assess the environmental impact of a US war with Iraq states that the war will cause environmental damage. The committee found that if chemical weapons were used, the water would be polluted and would endanger the lives of creatures in the Iran-Iraq border region.
--"Iran: Paying for US' Anti-Iraq War-Says Iranian Official," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 23 March 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
25 March 2003
Iran forms a committee to deal with the threat of use of chemical weapons by Iraq in a war with the United States.
--"Iran: Committee Formed to Deal with Threat Posed by Chemical Weapons," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 25 March, 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
7 April 2003
In response to an article appearing in the Madrid daily El Pais, the Iranian embassy in Madrid issues a statement denying that non-conventional arms such as chemical or biological weapons are part of the Iranian defense establishment.
--"Iranian Embassy Denies Spanish Press Report on Iranian WMD Program," 7 April 2003, FBIS document IAP20030407000071, <http//:www.fbis.gov>.
10 April 2003
The US Central Intelligence Agency submits its Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions, for 1 January Through 30 June 2002. Regarding Iran, the report states: "Iran is a party to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). Nevertheless [...] it continued to seek chemicals, production technology, training, and expertise from Chinese entities that could further Tehran's efforts at achieving an indigenous capability to produce nerve agents. Iran already has stockpiled blister, blood, and choking agents -- and the bombs and artillery shells to deliver them -- which it previously has manufactured. It probably also has made some nerve agents." The report also states that "[d]uring the first half of 2002, Russian entities remained a key source of dual-use biotechnology, chemicals, production technology, and equipment for Iran. Russia's biological and chemical expertise makes it an attractive target for Iranians seeking technical information and training on BW and CW agent production processes." Finally the report notes that "[s]ince 1997, the US has imposed numerous sanctions against Chinese entities for providing material support to the Iranian CW program. Evidence during the current reporting period continues to show that Chinese firms still provide dual-use CW-related production equipment and technology to Iran."
--Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions, 1 January Through 30 June 2002 (Washington, DC: Office of the Director of Central Intelligence, 2003), p. 3. <http://www.cia.gov/cia/reports/721_reports/pdfs/
27 April 2003
A non-governmental Iranian delegation departs from Iran to attend the first Review Conference of the Chemical Weapons Convention in The Hague.
--"Iran: Delegation to Attend Conference on Banning Chemical Weapons," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 20 June 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
28 April 2003
In a speech to the First Review Conference of the Chemical Weapons Convention in The Hague, US Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control Stephen G. Rademaker states: "[t]he United States believes Iran already has stockpiled blister, blood, and choking agents. We also believe it has made some nerve agents. We have discussed our concerns with Iran, but those concerns have not been dispelled. Those concerns need to be resolved rapidly and in the most transparent and cooperative manner possible."
Exercising its right of reply, the Iranian delegation notes that Iran did develop a CW capability in the final stages of its war with Iraq but subsequently "destroy[ed] the facilities under the supervision of the OPCW inspectors" and received a destruction certificate from the OPCW. The speaker further expresses his concerns that "the US is the only State party which has enacted national legislation clearly contrary to the Convention." He also observes that "Referring to the OPCW documents one could easily recognize the huge amounts of scheduled chemicals transferred to Israel, a non-State party which possesses chemical weapons, and has active clandestine activities."
--United States of America National Statement to the First Review Conference of the
Chemical Weapons Convention by Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control Stephen G. Rademaker, April 28, 2003, <http://www.opcw.org/cwcrevcon/doc/NAT/UnitedStates_s.pdf>; Statement by the delegation of the Islamic Republic of Iran, exercising the right of reply in response to the US delegation statement, 28 April 2003, <http://www.opcw.org/cwcrevcon/doc/NAT/
Iran_reply_2_US.pdf>; "In Friday's UK Papers," Chemical News and Intelligence, 16 May 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
30 April 2003
Addressing the First Review Conference of the Chemical Weapons Convention in The Hague, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister of Legal and International Affairs, Dr. G. Ali Khoshro states that Iran's commitment to the convention is based on the destructiveness of these weapons, which the Iranians experienced first-hand in the Iran-Iraq War. He states that Iran "strongly believes that production, storage, and use of all chemical weapons should be totally banned." He goes on to say, "Besides its commitments to the CWC, Iran has had transparent cooperation with all members of the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons Organization." Khoshro states that Iran has committed to such transparency by arranging courses on the treatment of chemical weapons for the world medical community.
--Statement by H.E. Dr. G. Ali Khoshro, Deputy Foreign Minister of Legal and International Affairs to the First Review Conference of the States Parties of the Chemical Weapons Convention, 30 April 2003, <http://www.opcw.org/cwcrevcon/doc/NAT/Iran_s1.pdf>; "Official Says Iran Committed to Chemical Weapons Convention," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 20 June 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
2 May 2003
Ali Hoseyni-Nawaz calls on all countries to take serious and coordinated measures to destroy chemical weapons. He made the comment while attending a conference at the OPCW in The Hague. He stated, "A number of countries, including the Zionist regime, are not signatories to the existing Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and have no desire to be bound by it although one decade has passed since the convention's approval." He also warned of a human catastrophe if the conference failed to act and not revise the Chemical Weapons Convention.
--"Iran Calls for Worldwide Destruction of Chemical Weapons," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 20 June 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
16 May 2003
The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) holds a news conference in London at which it accuses the Iranian government of producing chemical weapons. They name sites and individuals working on the weapons. The group states that it received the information from another Iranian opposition group, the People's Mojahideen of Iran (PMOI).
--"Iran has Secret Weapons of Mass Destruction Programme," The Press Association, 16 May 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
26-30 May 2003
The fifth Annual Course on Medical Aspects of Defense Against Chemical Weapons is taken by thirty-nine participants from twenty-six countries in Tehran, the Islamic Republic of Iran. The course was held at the International Medical Center for Training and Treatment against chemical Weapons (IMCTTCW). This was the latest in a series of courses that are provided for the benefit of member states of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. These courses share the experience of Iranian physicians and facilities associated with the treatment of victims of chemical warfare. They provide attending medical personnel with a unique opportunity to examine and learn from actual victims of chemical weapons as well as to exchange information with Iranian physicians.
--"Assistance and Protection: Medical Aspects of Defense Against Chemical Weapons," Chemical Disarmament Quarterly, Vol. 1 No. 2 (June 2003), p. 23.
The US Department of State Bureau of Verification and Compliance submits to Congress its report Adherence and Compliance with Arms Control and Nonproliferation Agreements and Commitments. It addresses compliance efforts by the United States and other state parties to multilateral agreements during the period 1 December 2000 to 31 December 2001. The report states: "Iran has not submitted a complete and accurate declaration, and in fact is acting to retain and modernize key elements of its CW program. Some of these elements include an offensive R&D CW program, an undeclared stockpile and an offensive production capability. Such activities are inconsistent with the CWC."
--The CBW Conventions Bulletin, No. 62 (December 2003), p. 29.
6 August 2003
Iranian spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khameini states that Iran is opposed to weapons of mass destruction. Khameini comments: "Nuclear weapons don't solve any problems. Furthermore, we don't agree, logically and principally, with weapons of mass destruction....We are opposed to them. At the time (of war against Iraq), in the discourse on jihad, we argued against biological and chemical weapons, and we banned them."
--"Iran: Khamene'i Says 'Nuclear Weapons Don't Solve Problems,'" BBC Monitoring International Reports, 7 August 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
17 September 2003
Testifying before the US-Israeli Joint Parliamentary Committee, which is conducting a hearing into Iran's WMD and support of terrorism, U.S. Assistant Secretary for Verification and Compliance Paula DeSutter says: "We believe that Iran has not submitted a complete and accurate declaration, and in fact is acting to retain and modernize key elements of its CW program. Some of these elements include an offensive R&D CW program, an undeclared stockpile and an offensive production capability. Such activities are inconsistent with the CWC."
--The CBW Conventions Bulletin, No. 62 (December 2003), p. 38.
22 September 2003
Iranian President Mohammad Khatami, speaking before an annual military parade in Tehran, says: "Iran has repeatedly declared that it has taken no step toward developing access to weapons of mass destruction but is still under pressure [from certain states which support Israel]."
--The CBW Conventions Bulletin, No. 62 (December 2003), p. 40.
27 September 2003
Iranian radio reports that more than 1,500 Iranians who suffered from the use of chemical weapons during the Iran-Iraq War are bringing claims against the US and other European states that supplied Iraq directly or indirectly with chemical weapons. It reports that another 2,000 victims are preparing to issue similar claims.
--The CBW Conventions Bulletin, No. 62 (December 2003), p. 41.
6-10 October 2003
In Russia, the Chairman of the OPCW Executive Council, Petr Kubernat of the Czech Republic, and a group of experts from several national delegations including Iran visit the Chemical Weapons Destruction Facility at Gorny and the facilities under construction at Shchuch'ye and Kambarka. The visit had been arranged so that the delegates could familiarize themselves with the status of the facilities and with measures adopted by Russia under the revised chemical demilitarization timetable.
--The CBW Conventions Bulletin, No. 62 (December 2003), p. 47.
18 October 2003
An unidentified Middle Eastern source states that Iran and Libya signed a secret agreement on chemical weapons in October 2002. The agreement was reportedly signed in Tripoli. According to the report, Iran will provide Libya with technology for the development and production of Scud warheads capable of carrying chemical weapons as well as protective masks and other equipment.
--"'Informed Source': Iran, Libya Signed 'Secret' Chemical Weapons Pact in Oct 02," Tokyo Foresight (in Japanese), 18 October 2003, pp. 28-29, translation provided by FBIS as "'Informed Source': Iran, Libya Signed 'Secret' Chemical Weapons Pact in Oct 02, FBIS document JPP20031029000041, <http//:www.fbis.gov>.
21 October 2003
At the Eighth Conference of the States Parties (CSP) to the CWC in The Hague, the Iranian ambassador and representative to the CWC, Hossein Panahi Azar, states that Iran's cooperation with the CWC has exceeded what is required by the treaty. He points out the fact that Iran has passed on its experience in treating casualties of chemical weapons to the world. He further states that Iran has already offered five training programs on this subject based on Iran's experience with chemical weapons during the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988). The ambassador further notes that Iran has received numerous OPCW inspections and levels criticism at the continuing application of Australia Group export controls against states parties to the CWC.
--Statement by H.E. Ambassador Hossein Panahi Azar to the Eighth Session of the Conference of the States Parties of the Chemical Weapons Convention, 21 October 2003, <http://www.opcw.org/docs/csp8_nat_statements/
Iran.pdf> "Official Says Iran Committed to Banning Chemical Weapons," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 22 October 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
25-29 October 2003
The sixth Annual Course on Medical Aspects of Defense against Chemical Weapons is held at the International Medical Center for Training and Treatment against chemical Weapons (IMCTTCW) in Tehran, the Islamic Republic of Iran. There are twenty-five participants from eight countries. This was the latest in a series of courses that are provided for the benefit of member states of the OPCW. These courses make available the experience of Iranian physicians and facilities associated with the treatment of victims of chemical warfare, and provide attending medical personnel with a unique opportunity to examine and learn from actual victims of chemical weapons as well as to exchange information with Iranian physicians.
--"Medical Aspects of Defense Against Chemical Weapons," Chemical Disarmament Quarterly, Vol. 1, No. 4 (December 2003), p. 38.
30 October 2003
In London, US Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security John R. Bolton delivers a speech to a meeting of the Bruges Group. Bolton makes several references to Iran's efforts to acquire weapons of mass destruction and states that Iran "has robust BW, CW and missile programs." His speech includes a number of references to the adverse consequences for rogue states of continuing proliferation efforts.
--"The New World after Iraq: The Continuing Threat of Weapons of Mass Destruction," Remarks by U.S. Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security John R. Bolton to the Bruges Group, 30 October 2003, <http://www.state.gov/t/us/rm/25752.htm>.
4 November 2003
Turkish Defense Minister Vecdi Gonul says that Iran's conventional armament and its possible pursuit of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons continued to be a risk for the security of region.
--BBC Monitoring Service, 4 November 2003, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
10 November 2003
The US Central Intelligence Agency releases its Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions, for 1 January Through 30 June 2003. In respect to Iran, the report states that: "Iran continued to vigorously pursue indigenous programs to produce WMD ... During the reporting period, Iran still focused particularly on entities in Russia, China, North Korea, and Europe." The report states: "Iran is a party to the [CWC]. Nevertheless, during the reporting period it continued to seek production technology, training, and expertise from Chinese entities that could further Tehran's efforts to achieve an indigenous capability to produce nerve agents. Iran likely has already stockpiled blister, blood, choking, and probably nerve agents - and the bombs and artillery shells to deliver them - which it previously had manufactured." The report notes that China continues to supply Iran with dual-use equipment that might assist the alleged Iranian chemical weapons program. Finally, the report also claims that Russia may be supplying dual-use equipment and training to Iran that could be diverted for use in a chemical weapons program.
--Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions (Washington, DC: Office of the Director of Central Intelligence, 2003), p. 3, <https://www.cia.gov/library/reports/ archived-reports-1/jan_jun2003.pdf>.
2 December 2003
Speaking at a conference organized by the Institute for Foreign Policy analysis and the Fletcher School's International Security Studies Program, US Undersecretary for Arms Control and International Security John R. Bolton issues a warning to Iran and a number of other states. Bolton says: "[r]ogue states such as Iran, North Korea, Syria, Libya and Cuba, whose pursuit of weapons of mass destruction makes them hostile to US interests, will learn that their covert programs will not escape detection or consequences." He went on to warn that "[w]hile we will pursue diplomatic solutions whenever possible, the United States and its allies are also willing to deploy more robust techniques, such as the interdiction and seizure of illict goods. If rogue states are not willing to follow the logic of nonproliferation norms, they must be prepared to face the logic of adverse consequences."
--John R. Bolton, Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security, Remarks to the Conference of the Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis and the Fletcher School's International Security Studies Program Nuclear Weapons and Rogue States: Challenge and Response, <http://www.state.gov/t/us/rm/26786.htm>; "Washington warns five countries over weapons of mass destruction," Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 3 December 2003.
19 December 2003
In a surprise development, Libya announces that it will join the Chemical Weapons Convention, destroy its existing stockpiles of chemical weapons, and end its pursuit of all WMD, and long-range missiles.
--David E. Sanger, Judith Miller "Libya to give up arms programs, Bush announces," New York Times, 20 December 2003, Section A p. 1, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
22 December 2003
In the wake of Libya's repudiation of WMD, reports emerge that British Prime Minister Tony Blair has ordered British diplomats to negotiate with Syria and Iran on a handover of their alleged arsenals of chemical and biological weapons. A British diplomat is quoted as saying: "We are engaged in similar processes to those which got results in Libya. There is a lot going on behind the scenes and we are hopeful of progress."
--"Blair's bid to rid Iran and Syria of WMDs," The Daily Record (Scotland), 22 December 2003, p. 4, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com>.
Updated January 2008