Compliance With the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction Condition 10(C) Report (Excerpts) (2017)

March 1, 2017

Weapon Program: 

  • Chemical

March 2017

This Report is submitted consistent with Condition (10)(C) of the Resolution of Advice and Consent to Ratification of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction (CWC). The Convention was ratified by the United States on April 25, 1997, and entered into force on April 29, 1997.

Condition (10)(C) provides that the President shall submit on January 1 of each year to the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate and the Committee on International Relations of the House of Representatives a full and complete classified and unclassified report setting forth—

(i) a certification of those countries included in the Intelligence Community’s (IC) Monitoring Strategy, as set forth by the Director of Central Intelligence’s Arms Control Staff and the National Intelligence Council (or any successor document setting forth intelligence priorities in the field of the proliferation of WMD) that are determined to be in compliance with the Convention, on a country-by-country basis;

(ii) for those countries not certified pursuant to clause (i), an identification and assessment of all compliance issues arising with regard to adherence of the country to its obligations under the Convention;

(iii) the steps the United States has taken, either unilaterally or in conjunction with another State Party:

(I) to initiate challenge inspections of the noncompliant party with the objective of demonstrating to the international community the act of noncompliance;

(II) to call attention publicly to the activity in question; and

(III) to seek on an urgent basis a meeting at the highest diplomatic level with the noncompliant party with the objective of bringing the noncompliant party into compliance;

(iv) a determination of the military significance and broader security risks arising from any compliance issue identified pursuant to clause (ii); and

(v) a detailed assessment of the responses of the noncompliant party in question to action undertaken by the United States described in clause (iii).

For its part, both as a matter of national policy and as a guide to national policy, the United States undertakes its own independent review – based upon the best available information, including intelligence information – of the compliance of CWC States Parties with their obligations under the Convention. The United States believes that CWC States Parties should be held to their obligations under the CWC, and places a high premium upon their compliance with specific declaration and implementation provisions (e.g., Articles III, IV, V, VI, and VII) and the “general obligations” provision under Article I.

Information and assessments in this report are current as of December 31, 2016. This report highlights new developments since the last Condition (10)(C) Report and refrains from repeating older information found in previously submitted reports.

Over the past few years, three states have joined the CWC. Angola and Somalia acceded to the CWC and became States Parties in 2015 and 2013 respectively, but have not submitted any relevant declarations. Burma ratified the CWC and became a State Party in 2015 and has submitted its initial declaration.

The Technical Secretariat (TS) of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) reported, as of July 31, 2016, the following regarding Article VII implementation:

  1. Angola, Somalia, and Timor-Leste, which became States Parties in 2015, 2013, and 2003, respectively, had not yet designated a National Authority.
  2. Seventy-nine States Parties had not yet notified the TS of the adoption of implementing legislation and/or regulations that cover all the initial measures (scheduled chemical transfers, prohibitions, penalties, extraterritorial obligations, legal basis of regulations, establishment of national authority, other initial measures): Afghanistan, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Armenia, The Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Burma, Cabo Verde, Cameroon, Chad, Chile, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Gabon, Georgia, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Iceland, Jamaica, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Maldives, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Rwanda, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, Spain, Suriname, Swaziland, Syria, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania, Vanuatu, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe.
  3. Four States Parties (Angola, Kiribati, Somalia, and Tonga) had not yet submitted their required initial declarations pursuant to the Convention. Three of these States Parties had not yet submitted any initial declarations under either Article III or Article VI: Angola (November 15, 2015),[1] Somalia (June 28, 2013), and Tonga (July 28, 2003). One State Party, Kiribati, had yet to submit its initial declaration under Article VI. The TS is unable to fulfill its verification tasks with regard to these States Parties.

As of December 31, 2016, there were 192 CWC States Parties; the most recent to accede to the CWC was Angola, which became a State Party on October 16, 2015. Four other States have neither ratified nor acceded to the CWC and, therefore, are not States Parties to the Convention (one signatory State, Israel, and three non-signatory States, Egypt, North Korea, and South Sudan).

This Report addresses the following three countries that have not been certified in compliance with the CWC at this time: Iran, Russia, and Syria. Additional information is available in the 2017 classified version of the Condition (10)(C) Report.




Based on available information, the United States cannot certify Iran has met its obligations under the Convention for declaration of: (1) its chemical weapons production facility (CWPF) declaration obligations; (2) its transfer of CW; and (3) its retention of an undeclared CW stockpile.


The Convention entered into force for Iran on December 3, 1997. Iran made its initial declaration in three separate submissions (June 1998, January 1999, and March 1999).

The United States did not have sufficient information to ascertain whether some Iranian facilities are involved in or intentionally retain the capability to produce CW agents. There are reports that Iran transferred CW munitions to Libya in the late 1980s. The United States also had insufficient information about possible CW activity prior to entry into force of the Convention for Iran. There was also insufficient information concerning activities relevant to its riot control agent (RCA) declaration and activities involving highly-potent pharmaceutical compounds.


In accordance with Article I, each State Party “undertakes to never under any circumstances 1.(a) to develop, produce, otherwise acquire stockpile or retain chemical weapons, or transfer, directly or indirectly, chemical weapons to anyone” and 2. “to destroy chemical weapons it owns or possesses…;” and under Article III each State Party is required to declare all chemical weapons activities including possession of RCAs. 

Due to a combination of irregularities in the Iranian declaration and insufficient clarification from Iran, the United States cannot certify that Iran:

  1. Had met its CWPF declaration obligations because of possible CW-capable infrastructure, including the possibility of a clandestine production-on- demand capability dispersed among industrial chemical plants and at military-owned facilities;
  2. Did not maintain a suspected undeclared CW stockpile;
  3. Had fully declared those chemicals it holds for riot-control purposes; and
  4. Had declared all CW transfers; with particular interest involving any transfers from Iran to Libya.

Iran’s Compliance with Articles VII and X Obligations

The OPCW TS reported that Iran had fully implemented legislation under Article VII of the CWC that included penal provisions and measures to control transfers of scheduled chemicals. As part of its obligations under paragraph 4 of Article X of the CWC acknowledging that it has a national protection program, Iran submitted declarations annually. Iran had also committed to support, by bilateral agreements, as well as through unilateral offers, assistance measures under paragraph 7, Article X.


On the margins of OPCW Executive Council (EC) meetings in 2001 and 2004, the United States engaged the Iranian delegation about Iran’s CWC compliance. The outcome of the discussions did not resolve any of the issues. Since 2004 and through the end of the reporting period, there have been no CWC compliance discussions between the United States and Iran.