Practice Relating to Rule 73. Biological Weapons
Finland’s Criminal Code (1889), as amended in 2008, provides that any person who “uses … biological or other prohibited weapons or ordnance” shall be “sentenced for a war crime
to imprisonment for at least one year or for life”.
(emphasis in original)
The Criminal Code further states:
Section 9 - Breach of the prohibition of biological weapons
A person who
(1) uses a biological or a toxin weapon in a manner not referred to in sections 1 through 3 of this chapter,
(2) unlawfully prepares, transports or delivers a biological weapon or a toxin weapon, or
(3) in violation of an international convention on the development, production and storage of bacteriological (biological) and toxin weapons and on their destruction (Treaties of Finland 15/1975) develops, prepares, otherwise procures, stores or possesses a biological weapon or a toxin weapon or weapons, devices or equipment for the dissemination of a biological weapon or a toxin weapon,
shall be sentenced, unless the same or a more severe penalty for the act has been provided elsewhere in the law, for a breach of the prohibition of biological weapons to imprisonment for at least four months and at most six years.
[emphasis in original]
At the CDDH, Finland stated that it “attached the greatest importance … to the prohibition of … bacteriological warfare in the Geneva [Gas] Protocol of 1925”.
In the preliminary stages of the First Review Conference of States Parties to the Biological Weapons Convention in 1980, Finland stated:
With regard to the compliance by the Government of Finland to articles I–V and X, I wish to communicate the following information: (1) the obligations set out in articles I–III have been complied with; (2) the legislation of Finland is in harmony with the obligations set out in article IV.