HL Deb 23 July 2001 vol 626 cc175-6WA
Lord Judd

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What is their current assessment of the risk of the proliferation of biological weapons. [HL302]

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean

We assess that a number of countries around the world either possess, or are seeking to acquire, biological weapons and their means of delivery. The risks of proliferation and the threat posed to the United Kingdom and its armed forces by such weapons were described in the Ministry of Defence's 1999 publication Defending against the Threat from Biological and Chemical Weapons. A copy of this publication has been placed in the Library of the House. We continue to monitor the risks of proliferation actively and to pursue the range of policies set out in the paper to counter them, namely arms control, preventing supply, deterring use and defending against.