1. Each State Party to the Convention on the Prohibition
of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological
(Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their Destruction (hereinafter
"the Convention") may be represented at the Conference
by a head of delegation and such other representatives, alternate
representatives and advisers as may be required.
2. The head of delegation may designate an alternate
representative or an adviser to act as a representative.
The credentials of representatives and the names
of alternate representatives and advisers shall be submitted to
the SecretaryGeneral of the Conference, if possible not
less than one week before the date fixed for the opening of the
Conference. Credentials shall be issued either by the Head of
the State or Government or by the Minister for Foreign Affairs.
The Conference shall establish a Credentials Committee
composed of the Chairman, one ViceChairman elected
in accordance with rule 5, and five members appointed by
the Conference on the proposal of the President. The Committee
shall examine the credentials of representatives and report to
the Conference without delay.
Pending a decision of the Conference upon their credentials,
representatives shall be entitled to participate provisionally
in the Conference.
The Conference shall elect the following officers:
a President and 20 VicePresidents as well as a Chairman
and 2 ViceChairmen for the Committee of the Whole, a Chairman
and a ViceChairman for the Drafting Committee and a Chairman
and a ViceChairman for the Credentials Committee.
1. If the President is absent from a meeting or any
part thereof, he shall designate a VicePresident to take
2. A VicePresident acting as President shall
have the same powers and duties as the President.
The President, or a VicePresident acting as
President, shall not vote, but shall appoint another member of
his delegation to vote in his place.
1. The General Committee shall be composed of the
President of the Conference, who shall preside, 20 VicePresidents,
the Chairman of the Committee of the Whole, the Chairman of the
Drafting Committee and the Chairman of the Credentials Committee.
No two members of the General Committee shall be members of the
same delegation and it shall be so constituted as to ensure its
2. If the President is unable to attend a meeting
of the General Committee, he may designate a VicePresident
to preside at such meeting and a member of his delegation to take
his place. If a VicePresident is unable to attend, he may
designate a member of his delegation to take his place. If the
Chairman of the Committee of the Whole, the Drafting Committee
or the Credentials Committee is unable to attend, he may designate
one of the ViceChairmen or the ViceChairman, as appropriate,
to take his place, with the right to vote unless he is of the
same delegation as another member of the General Committee.
The General Committee shall assist the President
in the general conduct of the business of the Conference and subject
to the decisions of the Conference, shall ensure the coordination
of its work.
1. There shall be a SecretaryGeneral of the
Conference. He shall act in that capacity in all meetings of the
Conference, its committees and other appropriate bodies established
under rule 34, and may designate a member of the Secretariat to
act in his place at these meetings.
2. The SecretaryGeneral of the Conference shall
direct the staff required by the Conference.
The Secretariat of the Conference shall, in accordance
with these rules:
(a) interpret speeches made at meetings;
(b) receive, translate and circulate the documents of the Conference;
(c) publish and circulate any report of the Conference;
(d) make and arrange for the keeping of sound recordings and summary records of meetings;
(e) arrange for the custody of the documents of the Conference in the archives of the United Nations and provide authentic copies of these documents to each of the depositary Governments; and
(f) generally perform all other work that the Conference may require.
The costs of the Review Conference, including the
session of the Preparatory Committee, will be met by the States
Parties to the Convention participating in the Review Conference
in accordance with the United Nations assessment scale prorated
to take into account differences between the United Nations
membership and the number of States Parties participating in the
Conference. States which have signed but not yet ratified the
Convention and which accept the invitation to take part in the
Review Conference as provided by rule 44.1 will share in the costs
to the extent of their respective rates of assessment under the
United Nations scale. For States Parties or signatories which
are not members of the United Nations the share will be determined
on the basis of the similarly prorated scale in force for
determining this share in the activities in which they take part.
A majority of the States Parties to the Convention
participating in the Conference shall constitute a quorum.
1. In addition to exercising the powers conferred
upon him elsewhere by these rules, the President shall preside
at the plenary meetings of the Conference, he shall declare the
opening and closing of each meeting, direct the discussion, ensure
observance of these rules, accord the right to speak, ascertain
consensus, put questions to the vote and announce decisions. He
shall rule on points of order. The President, subject to these
rules, shall have complete control of the proceedings and over
the maintenance of order thereat. The President may propose to
the Conference the closure of the list of speakers, a limitation
on the time to be allowed to speakers and on the number of times
the representative of each State may speak on a question, the
adjournment or the closure of the debate and the suspension or
the adjournment of a meeting.
2. The President, in the exercise of his functions,
remains under the authority of the Conference.
A representative may at any time raise a point of
order, which shall be immediately decided by the President in
accordance with these rules. A representative may appeal against
the ruling of the President. The appeal shall be immediately put
to the vote, and the President's ruling shall stand unless overruled
by a majority of the representatives present and voting. A representative
may not, in raising a point of order, speak on the substance of
the matter under discussion.
1. No one may address the Conference without having
previously obtained the permission of the President. Subject to
rules 15, 17 and 1922, the President shall call upon speakers
in the order in which they signify their desire to speak.
2. Debate shall be confined to the subject under
discussion and the President may call a speaker to order if his
remarks are not relevant thereto.
3. The Conference may limit the time allowed to speakers
and the number of times the representative of each State may speak
on a question; permission to speak on a motion to set such limits
shall be accorded only to two representatives in favour of and
to two opposing such limits, after which the motion shall be immediately
put to the vote. In any event, the President shall limit interventions
on procedural questions to a maximum of five minutes. When the
debate is limited and a speaker exceeds the allotted time, the
President shall call him to order without delay.
The Chairman of a committee may be accorded precedence
for the purpose of explaining the conclusion arrived at by his
During the course of a debate the President may announce
the list of speakers and, with the consent of the Conference,
declare the list closed. When the debate on an item is concluded
because there are no more speakers, the President shall declare
the debate closed. Such closure shall have the same effect as
closure pursuant to rule 22.
Notwithstanding rule 18, the President may accord
the right of reply to a representative of any State participating
in the Conference. Such statements shall be as brief as possible
and shall, as a general rule, be delivered at the end of the last
meeting of the day.
A representative may at any time move the suspension
or the adjournment of the meeting. No discussion on such motions
shall be permitted and they shall, subject to rule 23, be immediately
put to the vote.
A representative may at any time move the adjournment
of the debate on the question under discussion. Permission to
speak on the motion shall be accorded only to two representatives
in favour of and to two opposing the adjournment after which the
motion shall, subject to rule 23, be immediately put to the vote.
A representative may at any time move the closure
of the debate on the question under discussion, whether or not
any other representative has signified his wish to speak. Permission
to speak on the motion shall be accorded only to two representatives
opposing the closure, after which the motion shall, subject to
rule 23, be immediately put to the vote.
The motions indicated below shall have precedence
in the following order over all proposals or other motions before
(a) to suspend the meeting;
(b) to adjourn the meeting;
(c) to adjourn the debate on the question under discussion;
(d) to close the debate on the question under discussion.
Proposals and substantive amendments shall normally be submitted in writing to the SecretaryGeneral of the Conference, who shall circulate copies to all delegations. Unless the Conference decides otherwise, proposals and
substantive amendments shall be discussed or decided
on no earlier than 24 hours after copies have been circulated
in all languages of the Conference to all delegations.
A proposal or a motion may be withdrawn by its sponsors
at any time before a decision on it has been taken, provided that
it has not been amended. A proposal or a motion thus withdrawn
may be reintroduced by any representative.
Any motion calling for a decision on the competence
of the Conference to adopt a proposal submitted to it, shall be
decided upon before a decision is taken on the proposal in question.
Proposals adopted by consensus may not be reconsidered
unless the Conference reaches a consensus on such reconsideration.
When a proposal has been adopted or rejected by a majority or
twothirds vote, it may not be reconsidered unless the Conference,
by a twothirds majority of the members present and voting,
so decides. Permission to speak on a motion to reconsider shall
be accorded only to two speakers opposing the motion, after which
it shall be immediately put to the vote.
1. Decisions on matters of procedure and in elections
shall be taken by a majority of representatives present and voting.
2. The task of the Review Conference being to review
the operation of the Convention with a view to assuring that the
purposes of the preamble and the provisions of the Convention
are being realized, and thus to strengthen its effectiveness,
every effort should be made to reach agreement on substantive
matters by means of consensus. There should be no voting on such
matters until all efforts to achieve consensus have been exhausted.
3. If, notwithstanding the best efforts of delegates
to achieve consensus, a matter of substance comes up for voting,
the President shall defer the vote for 48 hours and during this
period of deferment shall make every effort, with the assistance
of the General Committee, to facilitate the achievement of general
agreement, and shall report to the Conference prior to the end
of the period.
4. If by the end of the period of deferment the Conference
has not reached agreement, voting shall take place and decisions
shall be taken by a twothirds majority of the representatives
present and voting, providing that such majority shall include
at least a majority of the States participating in the Conference.
5. If the question arises whether a matter is one
of procedure or of substance, the President of the Conference
shall rule on the question. An appeal against this ruling shall
immediately be put to the vote and the President's ruling shall
stand unless the appeal is approved by a majority of the representatives
present and voting.
6. In cases where a vote is taken in accordance with
paragraphs 1 and 4 above, the relevant rules of procedure relating
to voting of the General Assembly of the United Nations shall
apply, except as otherwise specifically provided herein.
Every State Party to the Convention shall have one
For the purposes of these rules, the phrase "representatives
present and voting" means representatives casting an affirmative
or negative vote. Representatives who abstain from voting are
considered as not voting.
All elections shall be held by secret ballot, unless
the Conference decides otherwise in an election where the number
of candidates does not exceed the number of elective places to
1. If, when only one elective place is to be filled,
no candidate obtains in the first ballot the majority required,
a second ballot shall be taken, confined to the two candidates
having obtained the largest number of votes. If in the second
ballot the votes are equally divided, the President shall decide
between the candidates by drawing lots.
2. In the case of a tie in the first ballot among
the candidates obtaining the second largest number of votes, a
special ballot shall be held among such candidates for the purpose
of reducing their number to two; similarly, in the case of a tie
among three or more candidates obtaining the largest number of
votes, a special ballot shall be held, if a tie again results
in the special ballot, the President shall eliminate one candidate
by drawing lots and thereafter another ballot shall be held in
accordance with paragraph 1.
1. When two or more elective places are to be filled
at one time under the same conditions, those candidates, in a
number not exceeding the number of such places, obtaining in the
first ballot the majority required and the largest number of votes,
shall be elected.
2. If the number of candidates obtaining such majority
is less than the number of places to be filled, additional ballots
shall be held to fill the remaining places, provided that if only
one place remains to be filled the procedures in rule 32 shall
be applied. The ballot shall be restricted to the unsuccessful
candidates having obtained the largest number of votes in the
previous ballot, but not exceeding twice the number of places
remaining to be filled. However, in the case of a tie between
a greater number of unsuccessful candidates a special ballot shall
be held for the purpose of reducing the number of candidates to
the required number; if a tie again results among more than the
required number of candidates, the President shall reduce their
number to that required by drawing lots.
3. If such a restricted ballot (not counting a special
ballot held under the conditions specified in the last sentence
of paragraph 2) is inconclusive, the President shall decide among
the candidates by drawing lots.
The Conference may establish appropriate bodies.
As a general rule each State Party to the Convention participating
in the Conference may be represented in those bodies unless otherwise
The Conference shall establish a Committee of the
Whole to consider in detail the substantive issues relevant to
the Convention with a view to facilitating the work of the Conference.
1. The Conference shall establish a Drafting Committee
composed of representatives of the same States which are represented
on the General Committee. It shall coordinate the drafting of
and edit all texts referred to it by the Conference. It shall
also, without reopening substantive discussion on any matter,
formulate drafts and give advice on drafting as requested by the
2. Representatives of delegations proposing texts
referred to the Drafting Committee in conformity with paragraph
1 of this rule shall be entitled to participate, at their request,
in the discussion of those texts in the Drafting Committee.
3. Representatives of other delegations may also
attend the meetings of the Drafting Committee and may participate
in its deliberations when matters of particular concern to them
are under discussion.
The rules relating to officers, the Conference Secretariat,
conduct of business and voting of the Conference (contained in
chaps. II (rules 57), IV (rules 1011), V (rules
1327) and VI (rules 2833) above) shall be applicable,
mutatis mutandis, to the proceedings of committees and
other appropriate bodies, except that:
(a) unless otherwise decided, any body established under rule 34 shall elect a chairman and such other officers as it may require;
(b) the Chairmen of the General Committee, the Committee of the Whole, the Drafting Committee and the Credentials Committee and the chairmen of bodies established under rule 34 may vote in their capacity as representatives of their States;
(c) a majority of the representatives on the General Committee, the Committee of the Whole, the Drafting Committee or the Credentials Committee shall constitute a quorum; the same may apply to any body established under rule 34 if the Conference so desires.
Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish
shall be the official languages of the Conference.
1. Speeches made in a language of the Conference
shall be interpreted into the other languages.
2. A representative may make a speech in a language
other than a language of the Conference if he provides for interpretation
into one such language. Interpretation into the other languages
of the Conference by interpreters of the Secretariat may be based
on the interpretation given in the first such language.
Sound recordings of meetings of the Conference and
of all committees shall be made and kept in accordance with the
practice of the United Nations. Unless otherwise decided, no such
recordings shall be made of the meetings of any other appropriate
body established under rule 34.
1. Summary Records of the plenary meetings of the
Conference, excluding that part of those meetings devoted to consideration
of agenda item 10 (a), general debate, shall be prepared
by the Secretariat. Such records shall be produced in the languages
of the Conference. They shall be distributed in provisional form
as soon as possible to all participants in the Conference. Participants
in the debate may, within three working days of receipt of provisional
summary records, submit corrections on summaries of their own
interventions to the Secretariat; in special circumstances, the
presiding officer may, in consultation with the SecretaryGeneral
of the Conference, extend the time for submitting corrections.
Any disagreement concerning such corrections shall be decided
by the presiding officer of the body to which the record relates,
after consulting, where necessary, the sound recordings of the
proceedings. Separate corrigenda to provisional records shall
not normally be issued.
2. The summary records, with any corrections incorporated,
shall be distributed promptly to participants in the Conference.
1. The plenary meetings of the Conference shall be
held in public unless otherwise decided.
2. Meetings of the Committees and any other appropriate
body established under rule 34 shall be held in private.
Any State signatory to the Convention which has not
yet ratified it shall be entitled to participate, without taking
part in the adoption of decisions, whether by consensus or by
vote, in the deliberations of the Conference, subject to prior
written notification to the SecretaryGeneral of the Conference.
This means that any of those signatory States shall be entitled
to attend meetings of the Conference; to address plenary meetings;
to receive the document of the Conference and to submit its views
in writing to the Conference, which shall be considered as Conference
(a) Any other State which, in accordance with article XIV of the Convention, has the right to become a Party thereto but which has neither signed nor ratified it may apply to the SecretaryGeneral of the Conference for Observer status, which will be accorded on the decision of the Conference.2/ Such a State shall be entitled to appoint officials to attend meetings of the Plenary other than those designated closed meetings, and to receive documents of the Conference. An Observer State shall also be entitled to submit documents to the participants in the Conference.
(b) Any national liberation organization entitled by the General Assembly of the United Nations 3/ to participate as an Observer in the sessions and the work of the General Assembly, all international conferences convened under the auspices of the General Assembly, and all international conferences convened under the auspices of other organs of the United Nations, may apply to the SecretaryGeneral of the Conference for Observer status, which will be accorded on the decision of the Conference. Such a liberation organization shall be entitled to appoint officials to attend meetings of the Plenary and of the Committee of the Whole other than those designated closed meetings, and to receive documents of the Conference. An Observer organization shall also be entitled to submit documents to the participants in the Conference.
3. The United Nations
The SecretaryGeneral of the United Nations
or his representative or representatives shall be entitled to
attend meetings of the Plenary and any other appropriate body
established under rule 34 and to receive the Conference documents.
They shall also be entitled to submit material, both orally and
4. Specialized agencies and regional intergovernmental
The specialized agencies as well as regional intergovernmental
organizations may apply to the SecretaryGeneral of the Conference
for Observer Agency status which will be accorded on the decision
of the Conference. An Observer Agency shall be entitled to appoint
officials to attend meetings of the Plenary other than those designated
closed meetings and to receive the documents of the Conference.
The Conference may also invite them to submit, in writing, their
views and comments on questions within their competence, which
may be circulated as Conference documents.
5. Nongovernmental organizations
Representatives of nongovernmental organizations
who attend meetings of the Plenary will be entitled upon request
to receive the documents of the Conference.
2/ It is understood that any such decision will be in accordance with the practice of the United Nations General Assembly.
3/ Pursuant to General Assembly resolutions 3237 (XXIX) of 22 November 1974 and 3280 (XXIX) of 10 December 1974.