القاعدة ذات الصلة
Switzerland
Practice Relating to Rule 74. Chemical Weapons
Switzerland’s Teaching Manual (1986) prohibits the use of toxic gases of any kind. 
Switzerland, Droit des gens en temps de guerre, Programme d’instruction fondé sur le Manuel 51.7/III “Lois et coutumes de la guerre”, Cours de base pour recrues de toutes les armes 97.2f, Armée suisse, 1986, p. 41.
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) prohibits the use of poison, asphyxiating, toxic or similar gases, or analogous liquids or materials. 
Switzerland, Lois et coutumes de la guerre (Extrait et commentaire), Règlement 51.7/II f, Armée Suisse, 1987, Articles 17 and 22.
Switzerland’s Regulation on Legal Bases for Conduct during an Engagement (2005) states:
16.1 Prohibited means of warfare
228 Prohibited are:
1 poison, chemical and biological weapons;
229 The production, stockpiling, import, export, transit and use of such means of combat are notably prohibited. 
Switzerland, Bases légales du comportement à l’engagement (BCE), Règlement 51.007/IVf, Swiss Army, issued based on Article 10 of the Ordinance on the Organization of the Federal Department for Defence, Civil Protection and Sports of 7 March 2003, entry into force on 1 July 2005, §§ 228–229.
Switzerland’s Military Criminal Code (1927), as amended, punishes “whoever will intentionally endanger somebody’s life or physical integrity by means of … toxic gases”. 
Switzerland, Military Criminal Code, 1927, as amended, Article 162.
Switzerland’s Military Criminal Code (1927), taking into account amendments entered into force up to 2011, states in a chapter entitled “War crimes”:
Art. 110
Articles 112–114 apply in the context of international armed conflicts, including in situations of occupation, and, if the nature of the offence does not exclude it, in the context of non-international armed conflicts.
Art. 112d
1 The penalty shall be a custodial sentence of not less than three years for any person who, in the context of an armed conflict:
b. employs biological or chemical weapons, including poisonous or asphyxiating gases, substances or liquids. 
Switzerland, Military Criminal Code, 1927, taking into account amendments entered into force up to 2011, Articles 110 and 112d (1)(b).
Switzerland’s Penal Code (1937), taking into account amendments entered into force up to 2011, states under the title “War crimes”:
Art. 264b
Articles 264d–264j apply in the context of international armed conflicts, including in situations of occupation, and, if the nature of the offence does not exclude it, in the context of non-international armed conflicts.
Art. 264h
1 The penalty shall be a custodial sentence of not less than three years for any person who, in the context of an armed conflict:
b. employs biological or chemical weapons, including poisonous or asphyxiating gases, substances or liquids. 
Switzerland, Penal Code, 1937, taking into account amendments entered into force up to 2011, Articles 264b and 264h (1)(b).
Switzerland’s Chemical Weapons Implementation Order (1994) provides:
It shall be prohibited:
a.to develop, produce, acquire, deliver to anyone, import, export, procure the transit of or stockpile chemical weapons within the meaning of Article II of the Chemical Weapons Convention, engage in the brokerage thereof or otherwise dispose of them;
b.to induce anyone to commit an act mentioned under letter a;
c.to facilitate the commission of an act mentioned under letter a. 
Switzerland, Chemical Weapons Implementation Order, 1994, Article 1; see also Federal Law on War Equipment as amended, 1996, Article 7.
Switzerland’s Law on the Support of the Elimination and Non-Proliferation of Chemical Weapons (2003) states: “The present law governs the Confederation’s support of the international efforts [to achieve] the universal and environmentally friendly elimination and non-proliferation of chemical weapons.” 
Switzerland, Law on the Support of the Elimination and Non-Proliferation of Chemical Weapons, 2003, Article 1.
Switzerland’s Ordinance on the Control of Chemical Products (2007), as amended in 2010, states: “The present ordinance … aims at preventing chemical products from being used to make chemical weapons.” 
Switzerland, Ordinance on the Control of Chemical Products, 2007, as amended in 2010, Article 1.
At the CDDH, Switzerland voted in favour of the Philippine amendment (see supra) because:
It would be a step forward to state expressly that any violation of The Hague Declaration of 1899 and the Geneva [Gas] Protocol of 1925 would constitute a grave breach. The rules laid down in those two instruments were undisputed and indisputable, and the amendment would have a deterrent effect on any State tempted to violate them, by exposing the members of its armed forces to the penalties applicable under the Geneva Conventions. 
Switzerland, Statement at the CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.44, 30 May 1977, p. 281, § 9.
In 1988, in a note on the prohibition on the use of chemical weapons issued, the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs stated: “The 1925 [Geneva Gas] Protocol declares a custom:” It added: “The 1925 [Geneva Gas] Protocol and custom prohibit the first use of chemical weapons and accept the lawfulness of second use only in the case of reprisals in kind.” 
Switzerland, Note of the Directorate for Public International Law of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, 15 December 1988, reprinted in Annuaire Suisse de Droit International, Vol. 46, 1989, pp. 244 and 247.
At the First Conference of States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention in 1997, Switzerland emphasized the importance of the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and stated its commitment to creating a world free of chemical weapons. 
Switzerland, Statement at the First Conference of States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention, The Hague, 6–23 May 1997.
In 2005, in a report in response to a parliamentary postulate on private security and military companies, Switzerland’s Federal Council stated: “International humanitarian law also limits the conduct of military operations permissible under international law. … The use of certain weapons such as biological or chemical weapons is also forbidden.” 
Switzerland, Report by the Swiss Federal Council on Private Security and Military Companies, 2 December 2005, Section 5.3.1, pp. 45–46.
Switzerland’s ABC of International Humanitarian Law (2009) states:
Chemical weapons
Chemical Weapons contain chemical substances that are a danger to health, can cause death to humans and animals, or render them temporarily incapable of resistance (hors de combat) or cause lasting damage. These substances can also contaminate foodstuffs, drinks and other materials. As a result of the terrible consequences of chemical weapons in the First World War, the use of asphyxiating, poisonous and similar gases was prohibited in 1925. In 1993 an international convention went further, prohibiting the development, production, stockpiling or use of chemical weapons and recommendending their destruction.
Weapons
International humanitarian law imposes limitations, in some cases a total ban, on the use of weapons whose impact goes beyond the permissible purpose of weakening the enemy. Weapons are prohibited on the basis of three fundamental criteria: if their use inevitably leads to death; if they cause disproportionate injury or Unnecessary suffering; if they strike indiscriminately. On the basis of these three criteria a number of specific weapons have been explicitly prohibited by international conventions, including … Biological and Chemical weapons. Some of these bans are part of Customary international law. …
Weapons of mass destruction
The definition of weapons of mass destruction includes Nuclear weapons as well as Biological and Chemical weapons. They differ from other Weapons in their capability to injure and kill people and destroy property on a massive scale, as well as to cause extensive and lasting damage to the environment. 
Switzerland, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, ABC of International Humanitarian Law, 2009, pp. 10, 40 and 41.
In 2009, in its Report on Foreign Policy, Switzerland’s Federal Council stated:
Switzerland plans to maintain its long-standing commitment to the disarmament and non-proliferation of chemical weapons. The [1993] Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (CWC) is the only treaty that provides for the prohibition and the destruction of a whole category of weapons of mass destruction and has a functioning verification mechanism. This grants it a particular importance. It imposes the destruction of all the stocks from here to 2012, which constitutes the greatest immediate challenge for State parties. … One of Switzerland’s priorities on the matter is the reinforcement of the verification system, notably in the domain of inspections of industrial facilities. In addition to training inspectors, it seeks to ensure the implementation of article X of the convention that defines the rules of cooperation and assistance between States in case of the use or threat to use chemical weapons. Another of its priorities consists in obtaining, through diplomatic and scientific means, that the convention continuously integrates new discoveries in chemical research. Switzerland considers that this is the only way that the convention can remain pertinent and fulfil its functions in terms of security and non-proliferation. Once all chemical stocks are eliminated, the question on the need to refocus the treaty will arise. It is in Switzerland’s interest that the treaty remains centered on non-proliferation and that it is not converted into a simple instrument for development aid and the transfer of know-how. 
Switzerland, Federal Council, Report on Foreign Policy 2009, 2 September 2009, Section 3.3.5.2, p. 5788.
[emphasis in original]
In 2010, in its Report on Foreign Policy, Switzerland’s Federal Council stated:
Switzerland plans to maintain its long-standing commitment to the disarmament and non-proliferation of chemical weapons. From 2003 to 2009, it participated in activities for the destruction of stocks in Russia and Albania. …
One of Switzerland’s priorities is reinforcing the verification mechanism of the Convention and the protection systems against chemical weapons. This is why it supports the work of the Organisation for the prohibition of chemical weapons (OPCW), which supervises the application of the CWC [1993 Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons], by training inspectors and placing material at its disposal in case a contracting State is attacked with chemical weapons. Switzerland will maintain its financial, material and human commitment in the coming years.
Politically, Switzerland seeks to ensure that the CWC permanently integrates new discoveries in chemical research (incapacitating agents, for example). As this is not currently the case, the CWC risks losing its pertinence. 
Switzerland, Federal Council, Report on Foreign Policy 2010, 10 December 2010, Section 4.5.2, p. 1139.
[footnote in original omitted]
In 2012, in a speech on the occasion of Public International Law Day, the head of Switzerland’s Federal Department of Foreign Affairs stated that international humanitarian law “also prohibits the use of weapons that have indiscriminate effects, such as chemical weapons”. 
Switzerland, Speech by the head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs on the occasion of Public International Law Day, 19 October 2012.
In 2012, in the report on Switzerland’s arms control and disarmament policy, Switzerland’s Federal Council stated: “Switzerland is in favour of the prohibition of all types of weapons of mass destruction, as these pose heavy threats against international security as well as against populations”. 
Switzerland, Report of the Federal Council on Switzerland’s arms control and disarmament policy, 30 November 2012, p. 10.
In the report, Switzerland’s Federal Council also stated:
As the first document to ever prohibit a whole category of weapons of mass destruction … , the 1997 Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (CWC) holds a unique place in the security policy. It perfectly suits the needs of Switzerland when it comes to international agreements on weapons of mass destruction. Since its entry in force, the CWC has achieved an almost universal character: as at September 2012, 188 countries had ratified the convention. …
… The ongoing conflict in Syria reminded us that even if the destruction of stockpiles within the framework of the CWC advances, the risk that chemical weapons represent for regional and international stability is anything but remote. 
Switzerland, Report of the Federal Council on Switzerland’s arms control and disarmament policy, 30 November 2012, p. 15.
In the report, Switzerland’s Federal Council further stated:
Once the destruction of all stockpiles of chemical weapons becomes a reality … Switzerland will focus on the question of re-orientation of the OPCW (Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons). As with biological weapons, this would mostly involve responding to the challenges posed by rapid technological development. Switzerland will continue to pursue its long-term commitment advocating the work of the OPCW, whether it be by providing input during negotiations, through technical expertise, capacity-building projects and training, or by offering assistance within the framework of protection against chemical weapons. 
Switzerland, Report of the Federal Council on Switzerland’s arms control and disarmament policy, 30 November 2012, p. 30.
In 2013, in a statement at the Third Review Conference of the Chemical Weapons Convention, the permanent representative of Switzerland stated:
We hope that the coming years will be characterized by a continued engagement for the international norm against the development, possession and use of chemical weapons. …
We have to prepare the OPCW [Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons] for its transition to an agency whose main task will be to ensure that the menace of chemical warfare and the use of toxic chemicals for hostile purposes will never re-emerge. To this end it is crucial that the universal ban on chemical weapons is upheld. Achieving universal adherence to the [1993 Chemical Weapons] Convention must remain a key priority for the OPCW, because we can only achieve a world free from chemical weapons once every single country has acceded to the Chemical Weapons Convention.
In particular … we call upon Syria to join the Chemical Weapons Convention without delay and to secure and completely destroy its chemical weapons stockpiles …
Switzerland is deeply concerned about the recent allegations … that chemical weapons have been used in Syria. If confirmed, it would constitute a violation of the 1925 Geneva Protocol as well as other relevant rules of customary international law. Switzerland urges parties to the conflict not to use chemical weapons under any circumstances …
… [W]e urge States Parties to the CWC [1993 Chemical Weapons Convention] to accept their particular responsibility for safeguarding the international norm against the use of chemical weapons in order to prevent their re-emergence in armed conflict. Let us … send the unequivocal signal that the use of any toxic chemicals as a method of warfare will not be tolerated by the international community under any circumstances.
… Switzerland regrets that the final extended deadline for the destruction of all chemical weapons has not been met by all States parties. However, we welcome the fact that States parties could agree on the way forward on this issue and call upon the remaining Possessor States to continue their efforts in destroying all remaining stockpiles as soon as possible. 
Switzerland, Statement by the permanent representative of Switzerland at the Third Review Conference of the Chemical Weapons Convention, 8 April 2013, pp. 4–5.
In 2013, in answer to a written question in Parliament regarding the chemical weapons in Syria and the referral to the International Criminal Court, the head of Switzerland’s Federal Department of Foreign Affairs stated:
Switzerland is deeply shocked and concerned by the allegations of the use of chemical weapons in conflict in Syria. … [T]he use of chemical weapons constitutes a violation of international law. Syria has not ratified the [1993] Convention on Chemical Weapons. Nonetheless, it has ratified the Geneva Protocol of 1925 for the prohibition of the use of asphyxiating, poisonous or other gases and bacteriological methods of warfare, that prohibits the use of chemical weapons. 
Switzerland, Answer by the Head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs to written questions 13.5206 and 13.5207 in Parliament regarding the chemical weapons in Syria and the referral to the International Criminal Court, 10 June 2013.
In 2013, in a statement at the Fourth Meeting of States Parties to the Convention on Cluster Munitions, the ambassador of Switzerland stated: “[C]luster munitions have been now classified in Swiss law in the category of prohibited arms, which already include nuclear, biological and chemical weapons as well as anti-personnel mines.” 
Switzerland, Statement by the ambassador of Switzerland at the Fourth Meeting of States Parties to the Convention on Cluster Munitions, 10 September 2013.
In 2013, Switzerland’s Federal Department of Foreign Affairs issued a press release entitled “Chemical weapons in Syria: Switzerland’s position and response”, which stated:
The analyses that have been carried out confirm the use of chemical weapons – constituting a serious breach of international humanitarian law. Switzerland strongly condemns these violations. …
Syria's accession to the Chemical Weapons Convention of 1993 is an important step towards the universality of this convention. It is essential that its provisions be fully implemented. 
Switzerland, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, “Chemical weapons in Syria: Switzerland's position and response”, Press Release, 16 September 2013.
In 2013, in a statement before the First Committee of the UN General Assembly, the permanent representative of Switzerland stated:
The United Nations Mission to Investigate Allegations of the Use of Chemical Weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic has confirmed that chemical weapons have been used on a relatively large scale. This constitutes a serious violation of international humanitarian law. Switzerland condemns this violation in the strongest terms. 
Switzerland, Statement by the permanent representative of Switzerland before the First Committee of the UN General Assembly, 7 October 2013, p. 5.