A stringent regime governs the handling of confidential information at the OPCW. The OPCW Policy on Confidentiality is essential to the work of the Organisation because of the intrusive verification measures that are aimed at promoting confidence in compliance with the Convention while respecting States Parties’ legitimate concerns about sensitive information. The Policy addresses the need for disclosure of appropriate information to the OPCW to demonstrate compliance with the Convention while ensuring confidential information provided by States Parties is appropriately protected.
In case of breaches or alleged breaches of confidentiality, procedures are in place to determine its cause and impacts. The Confidentiality Annex to the Convention establishes, as a subsidiary organ of the Conference, a Commission for the settlement of disputes related to confidentiality. The Confidentiality Commission plays an essential part in upholding trust in the OPCW’s confidentiality regime.
The Confidentiality Annex authorises the Confidentiality Commission to consider disputes relating to breaches of confidentiality involving both a State Party and the Organisation. The rules adopted by the Conference allow the Confidentiality Commission to consider two additional categories of dispute: those referred to it by the Conference, and cases where the Confidentiality Commission is chosen by two States Parties in dispute over a matter of confidentiality as a means of resolving their dispute.
A Group of Independent Experts
The Confidentiality Commission has 20 members who are appointed by the Conference. Each State Party may nominate one candidate on the basis of: individual competence, integrity, and background in one or more fields relevant to the work of the Confidentiality Commission (dispute resolution, the confidentiality and verification provisions of the Convention, chemical industry, military security, data security, international law and national legal systems). Prior to appointment by the Conference, all candidates are considered by the regional groups to which their States Parties belong.
Commission members serve in a personal capacity (not as representatives of their respective governments) and serve no more than three consecutive two-year terms.
In accordance with paragraph 23 of the Confidentiality Annex to the Convention and Rule 2(b) of the Operating Procedures of the Confidentiality Commission, the Conference elected the following 20 members of the Confidentiality Commission for a term of two years, from 1 May 2021 until 30 April 2023.
- Mr Amine Sid (Algeria)
- Mr John Billy-Eko (Cameroon)
- Colonel Crépin Sambou (Senegal)
- Ms Boipelo Motsi (South Africa)
- Mr Jiang Bo (China)
- Ms Cecillia Axel Toumahu (Indonesia)
- Dr Reza Najafi (Iran, Islamic Republic of)
- Professor Asada Masahiko (Japan)
- Mr Eduard Klobouček (Czech Republic)
- Mr Călin Fabian (Romania)
- Ms Anna Kogteva (Russian Federation)
- Mr Serhii Trotskyi (Ukraine)
Latin America and the Caribbean
- Mr Mariano Enrico (Argentina)
- Mr Jorge Antonio Caravajal San Martín (Chile)
- Mr Jesús María Cuevillas Domínguez (Cuba)
- Mr Isaac Morales Tenorio (Mexico)
Western European and Other States
- Mr Tom Whitehead (United Kingdom)
- Mr Christoph Vedder (Germany)
- Mr Ioannis Seimenis (Greece)
- Mr Paul van Rhijn (Netherlands)