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Non-lethal weapons are intended to incapacitate personnel or materiel without injuring people. This Policy Paper describes and analyses biological and chemical substances that have the potential to be used as weapons or can improve the efficacy of other, more traditional, weapons. Potential loopholes in the international prohibitions against chemical and biological warfare are presented together with practical, politically feasible and technically useful policy options.
Chemical and biological substances may be used to incapacitate or influence human behaviour and can be used in both wars and other conflict situations, including for peacekeeping and some counterterrorism operations. The possible applications of science and technology for developing such agents are also expanding. This Policy Paper strikes the right balance between scientific detail and reader-friendliness to inform both the specialist and the generalist on this emergent and complex issue.
3. Chemical agents
4. Disabling biochemical substances and synthetic biology
5. Conclusions and recommendations
Appendix A. International law with potential application to non-lethal weapons