Practice Relating to Rule 74. Chemical Weapons
Ecuador’s Naval Manual (1989) states, under the heading “Chemical weapons”: “International law, both customary and treaty-based, prohibits taking the initiative to use lethal chemical weapons during armed conflicts.”
It also provides: “The following acts constitute war crimes: … use of prohibited weapons or ammunition.”
Ecuador’s National Civil Police Penal Code (1960) states that members of the National Civil Police “who use or order to be used … asphyxiating or poisonous gases” commit a punishable offence.
In 1988, in a statement before the Fifteenth Special Session of the UN General Assembly, Ecuador stated: “Among disarmament measures, Ecuador believes that priority should be given to the following: … a complete ban on the testing or production of new weapons of mass destruction, including chemical [weapons].”
In 1989, in reply to a note verbale of the UN Secretary-General on the subject of chemical weapons, Ecuador declared that it did not possess chemical weapons.
In 1991, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the situation between Iraq and Kuwait, Ecuador stated:
It is … timely to insist on observance of the international agreements which prohibit the use of asphyxiating and toxic gases and bacterial warfare and which seek the universal elimination of chemical and biological weapons.
At the First Conference of States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention in 1997, Ecuador stated that it was in favour of global eradication of chemical weapons and stressed the importance of universal adherence to the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention.