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28 1997




Short title and commencement.

1. —(1) This Act may be cited as the Chemical Weapons Act, 1997.

(2) This Act shall come into operation on such day as the Minister shall by order appoint.


2. —(1) In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires—

authorised officer” means—

(a) an officer of the National Authority appointed under section 6 (1) to be an authorised officer,

(b) an international inspector, or

(c) in circumstances referred to in section 8 , a member of the Garda Síochána;

chemical weapons” means—

(a) toxic chemicals and their precursors, except where intended for—

(i) peaceful purposes,

(ii) purposes relating to protection against toxic chemicals, or

(iii) law enforcement purposes within the State,

as long as the types and quantities are consistent with such purposes;

(b) munitions and devices specifically designed to cause death or other harm through the toxic properties of those toxic chemicals defined in paragraph (a) of this definition which would be released as a result of the employment of such munitions and devices; or

(c) any equipment specifically designed for use directly in connection with the employment of those munitions or devices;

the Convention” means the United Nations Convention on the Prohibition, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction, signed by the State at Paris, France on the 13th day of January, 1993, as amended from time to time pursuant to Article XV of the Convention;

international inspector” means a person who holds a certificate issued under section 5 by the National Authority;

the Minister” means the Minister for Enterprise and Employment;

the National Authority” means the National Authority for Occupational Safety and Health, or any other authority designated to be the National Authority in place of that authority in regulations made under this Act;

the Organisation” means the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons established pursuant to Article VIII of the Convention;

place” includes any means of transport and any building or structure on land;

precursor” means a chemical reactant which takes part at any stage in the production by whatever method of a toxic chemical, including any key component of a binary or multicomponent chemical system;

toxic chemical” means any chemical which through its chemical action on life processes can cause death, temporary incapacitation or permanent harm to humans or animals, including all such chemicals regardless of their origin or of their method of production, and regardless of whether they were produced in facilities, in munitions or elsewhere.

(2) Unless the context otherwise requires, all words and expressions used in this Act have the same meaning as in the Convention.

(3) In this Act—

(a) a reference to a section is a reference to a section of this Act, unless it is indicated that reference to some other enactment is intended,

(b) a reference to a subsection, paragraph or subparagraph is a reference to the subsection, paragraph or subparagraph of the provision in which the reference occurs, unless it is indicated that a reference to some other provision is intended, and

(c) a reference to a Schedule by number is a reference to the Schedule so numbered in the Schedules of Chemicals set out in the Annex on Chemicals in the Convention (a copy of which Schedules are set out in the Schedules to this Act).