World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


96% of Syria’s declared chemical weapons destroyed – UN

Ninety-six percent of Syria’s declared chemical weapons destroyed – UN-OPCW mission chief

4 September 2014 – The Special Coordinator for the Joint Mission of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the United Nations (OPCW-UN) told the Security Council today that 96 percent of Syria’s declared stockpile, including the most dangerous chemicals, had been destroyed and preparation were underway to destroy the remaining 12 production facilities.

“This is a chemical weapons disarmament process, it’s been unique,” said Sigrid Kaag after her final briefing to the Security Council in her capacity as the head of the joint mission dealing with Syria’s chemical weapons, which is winding up its work at the end of September.

“At the same time, we reiterate our strong hope that if this is achieved, that conditions for peace and security and the political process will be centre stage for the benefit of the people of Syria and that of the region, particularly in these days of profound crisis.”

Ms. Kaag told a press conference at UN Headquarters following her closed-door briefing to the Council that the mission had overseen that destruction of 100 percent of “priority chemicals” and 96 percent of Syria’s chemical weapons stockpile, but the good offices of the UN Secretary-General on this issue, discussions on monitoring verification, and accurate reporting to the Council will be continued.

She said starting October 1, the OPCW will be in the lead – in partnership with the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNPOS) to begin destroying the 12 remaining chemical weapons facilities – seven so-called hangars and five tunnels.

“All in all, the joint mission has achieved its objectives, has assisted the authorities in Damascus to achieve their goals as a State party, but the residual activities that remain of course are also of importance and interest to the [Security] Council so they have been asked to be briefed on a regular basis as before for a foreseeable period,” Ms. Kaag said.

The Security Council President for September, United States Ambassador Samantha Power, told reporters after the meeting, the Council’s interest in the issue of ridding Syria of chemical weapons will not abate as “Council members noted that the elimination effort is not complete.”

Ms. Power also said some Security Council members raised their concerns about the Syrian Government’s use of chlorine gas, as reported by the UN Human Rights Council’s Commission of Inquiry last month.

In response to a question, the Security Council President said Security Council resolution 2118 (2013) has not yet been fulfilled, “and it won’t be fulfilled until this Council has confidence that the terms of the chemical weapons convention has been met.” In that resolution, the Council endorsed the expeditious destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons programme, with inspections to begin by 1 October, and agreed that in the event of non-compliance, it would impose “Chapter VII” measures.

The removal of the most critical material for destruction began in early January, in line with an agreement brokered by Russia and the United States, by which Syria renounced its chemical weapons material and joined 1992 Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons.


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Binoy Kampmark: The Fall Of Tony Abbott

The question was one of timing. The Coalition had been registering losses in poll after poll. The Abbott style hardly improved after a spill was forced on the party. Despite claiming that he would be ushering in a spring clean, he continued bypassing ministers and MPs... More>>



Pacific.Scoop: Smaller Pacific States Call For Coal Moratorium

PNG Loop: Leaders of the Pacific Smaller Island States have called on all nations – especially the advanced economies in the region – to rise to the challenge of climate change. They want to steer the world on a path where climate change is no longer a threat to earth. More>>


Austria And Germany To Take In Thousands Of Refugees

UN hails decision by Austria and Germany to take in thousands of migrants and refugees at Hungary border More>>

On International Day, Ban Calls On People Everywhere To Act

On International Day, Ban calls on people everywhere to act charitably in the face of human suffering More>>

Peace Deal ‘first Step’ In Resolving South Sudan Crisis

Children at a protection of civilians site in Juba, South Sudan, run by the UN Mission, perform at a special cultural event in March 2015. UN Photo/JC McIlwaine More>>

Yemen: Killing Or Maiming An Average Of Eight Children A Day

Killing or maiming an average of eight children a day, ‘brutal’ Yemen conflict must end – UNICEF More>>

Changing Habits/behaviours Key To Overcome Vaccine Hesitancy

Vaccine hesitancy can be caused by factors such as negative beliefs based on myths, misinformation. Fear of needles can be a factor for refusal. Photo: PAHO/WHO More>>

Burundi: Ban Condemns Assassination Of Senior Army Officer

Refugees from Burundi in South Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Photo: OCHA/Naomi Frerotte United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has condemned the assassination Burundi’s former Army Chief of Staff, Colonel Jean Bikomagu, who ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news