Tag Archives: OPCW

9 January 2014

Chemical weapons removal from Syria has started

The removal of the most critical material for destruction began on 7 January 2014, a week after the deadline for its completion set by an agreement brokered by Russia and the United States under which Syria renounced its chemical weapons material and joined the 1992 Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons. ‘This movement is very important because it’s the first important step in an expected process of continued movement for the onward destruction out of country’ Sigrid Kaag, head of the Joint Mission of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and the United Nations told reporters after updating the Security Council on the accord, which set 30 June for the elimination of all materials. (more…)

Source: UN News Centre | Security Council expects Syria to meet June deadline for chemical weapons removal, official says

4 December 2013

Syrian chemical weapons to be shipped in Danish-US operation

A Danish cargo vessel is due to load Syria’s chemical arms stockpile and transfer it to a US ship in early January 2014. The plan, which has not yet been finalised, has been drawn up by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

The Guardian reports that it is not yet clear whether the transfer between the two ships of about 500 tonnes of lethal chemicals, including nerve agents, will be done at sea or when both vessels are docked, and that both options have serious challenges. So far, no Mediterranean port has agreed to host the transfer on land.

Source: The Guardian | Syria's chemical weapons to be shipped in delicate US-Danish operation

16 October 2013

Sharing Risks, Sharing Liability: Environmental and Health Risks of the Destruction of Syrian Chemical Weapons

On 11 October 2013, the UN Security Council authorised the establishment of a Joint Mission of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and the United Nations (UN) to oversee the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons. The Council endorsed the proposal formulated by Ban Ki-moon in a letter to the Council of 7 October (S/2013/591), pursuant to a request by the Security Council in Resolution 2118 (2013).

While all attention now focusses on the completion of the Joint Mission’s goal (the elimination of Syrian chemical weapons), it is not too early to plan for contingencies. The destruction of the chemical weapons will entail significant risks for the environment and human health. (more…)

9 October 2013

Ban Ki-moon seeks support for joint mission to destroy chemical weapons in Syria

Besides the almost 100 United Nations and chemical weapons experts that will be deployed over the coming months in a joint mission (with the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons), to oversee the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons stockpiles, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon noted that a staging area and support base will be established in Cyprus (due to the dangers on the ground in Syria), and that the UN contribution will primarily be for logistics, security, liaison, medical support, communications and administration.

Ban Ki-moon called upon UN member states ‘to offer their full support to the work of the Joint Mission including through the provision of financial, material, technical and operational assistance’ to carry out last month’s Security Council resolution on the elimination of Syria’s chemical weapons material and equipment. In phase three (from 1 November to 30 June 2014), the joint mission will be expected to support, monitor and verify the destruction of a ‘complex chemical weapons programme involving multiple sites.’ In this phase, ‘it is highly probable that assistance by other Member States will be required in the areas of the provision of both technical and operational advice, support and equipment, as well as security and possibly other areas in order to successfully complete the destruction and/or removal activities within the allotted time’, according to the Secretary-General.

Source: UN News Centre | Ban seeks 100-member joint mission to oversee destruction of Syrian chemical weapons

Newer posts →