Chemical Weapons: Status of Forensic Technologies and Challenges to Source Attribution|
Despite an international ban on their use, chemical weapons have been used over the past 10 years in assassinations and on civilian populations. When a chemical weapon is used, investigators may use forensic technologies to detect that it was used, identify the chemical, and help attribute it to a likely source.
Challenges to such investigations include small or degraded samples. These can result if investigators can't reach a site soon enough after an attack, or if it takes a long time to get samples to a lab.
We present 6 policy options to help decision makers address this and other challenges.