Practice Relating to Rule 74. Chemical Weapons
Spain’s LOAC Manual (1996) prohibits the use of asphyxiating or poisonous gases. It reproduces the content of Articles I and IV of the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention.
Spain’s LOAC Manual (2007) states that there is an absolute prohibition on the use of certain weapons, including “[c]hemical weapons” and “[a]sphyxiating, poisonous or other gases”.
The manual repeats extracts from Articles I and II of the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention.
Spain’s Penal Code (1995), as amended in 2003, states:
1. Any person who manufactures, commercializes or stockpiles weapons or munitions without authorization by law or competent authority shall be punished:
1.° In the case of … chemical weapons … , with five to ten years’ imprisonment for promoters and organizers, and three to five years’ imprisonment in the case of accessories.
3.° The same penalties shall apply, considering the perpetrators’ degree of participation, to the trafficking of … chemical … weapons.
2. The same penalties established for point 1.° in sub-section 1 shall apply to whoever develops or uses chemical … weapons or makes preparations for their use.
The Penal Code also states:
1. … Stockpiling of chemical …weapons is understood as the manufacture, commercialization or possession of these weapons.
2. … Chemical … weapons are understood as defined by the international treaties and covenants to which Spain is a party.
The development of chemical … weapons is understood as any activity comprising scientific or technical research or examination leading to the creation of a new chemical … weapon or the modification of an existing chemical … weapon.
In 1995, during a debate in the First Committee of the UN General Assembly, Spain expressed support on behalf of the European Union, for the strengthening of the prohibition against chemical weapons.