Philippine president issues order to enforce chemical weapons ban

Philippine President Benigno S. Aquino recently issued an order that the Anti-Terrorism Council will be the lead agency behind the enforcement of an international arms control agreement that bans chemical weapons.

The order, known as Executive Order No. 39, is in compliance with the country’s obligations under the Chemical Weapons Convention, according to Executive Secretary of the ATC Paquito N. Ochoa, Jr., Xinhua reports.

The CWC is an international treaty that was adopted in 1992 to outlaw the stockpiling, production and use of chemical weapons.

“There is a need to fully implement in the country the provisions of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons Convention since our country took part in the negotiations that led to its adoption as well as signed and ratified it,” Ochoa said, according to

Before the issuance of the EO, the Department of Foreign Affairs was the interim Philippine National Authority on CWC.

Ochoa said that the president signed EO 39 on April 28, reports. Ochoa said that paragraph four, Article VII, of the treaty provides that each party to the CWC will establish a “National Authority” to coordinate between the Philippines and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. The Philippines is a member of the Netherlands-based organization.

The CWC was originally adopted on September 3, 1992, and the Philippines signed and ratified the Convention on January 13, 1993, and February 21, 1995, respectively. On August 19, 1996, the senate of the Philippines issued Resolution No. 49, which signified its concurrence to the ratification of the convention by the government.