Investigating Alleged Use of Chemical and Biological Weapons

Alexander Ghionis acts as Rapporteur at the fifth UNSGM Designated Laboratories workshop

Spiez, Switzerland - Alexander Ghionis served as Rapporteur at the fifth United Nations Secretary‐General’s Mechanism (UNSGM) Designated Laboratories workshop in Spiez, Switzerland, on 12-13 September 2019. The meeting, which was hosted by Spiez Laboratory, brought together experts from laboratories, policy making, and other relevant government offices to address a number of questions related to the UNSGM Designated Laboratories network

Designated laboratories play a crucial role in a UNSGM investigation. In the case of an investigation for the presence of chemical and biological agents, the UNSGM Designated Laboratories are tasked with analysing samples and reporting their findings to the Secretary-General. The workshop focused on the following themes:

1. Review of past and outlook to future laboratory exercises, lessons learned, recommendations, including the enhancement of quality assurance, increasing the number of participating laboratories and broadening geographical representation;

2. Laboratory support and assistance: required capabilities of a UNSGM Designated Laboratory to support and assist a mission team, while respecting the mandate and confidentiality

3. Interfaces to laboratories: guidance for sampling from a laboratory perspective, and the role and function of expert consultants with regard to UNSGM Designated Laboratories;

4. Laboratory reporting: guidance for UNSGM Designated Laboratories in reporting sample analyses results

A summary report of the workshop will be made available later this year.

Further information:

Read the previous four UNSGM Designated Laboratories workshop reports

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