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International Talks Held To Address Chemical Weapons Threats

The conference in Edinburgh will highlight the potential of substances as assassination tools.

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Countering chemical weapon threats is an enduring focus of the defence agenda (Picture: Crown Copyright).

A conference in Edinburgh is addressing the growing threat of chemical weapons and the current regulation on substances that pose a security risk.

More than 200 representatives from 85 countries are expected to attend the 16th International Strategic Trade Controls and Border Security Conference.

The talks are being hosted by the US and the UK, aiming to enhance border measures alongside international partners.

The meeting aims to address a rise in the number of attacks in recent years, and discuss the availability of, and access to, materials, technology and equipment that may be used in the development of chemical weapons.

Challenges in identifying and inspecting illicit chemical shipments will also be discussed. 

Last year, former Russian spy, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter Yulia were contaminated in Salisbury by a military-grade nerve agent named Novichok.

Confirmation of the substance came from the head of the UK's chemical weapons facility at Porton Down.