OPCW adopts plan to eliminate Syria's chemical weapons

OPCW adopts plan to eliminate Syria
# 16 November 2013 04:36 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) adopted here Friday a detailed plan for the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons program in the first half of 2014, the internation watchdog said in a statement, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

"I welcome the decision reached today by the Executive Council," said OPCW Director General Ahmet Uzumcu. "The plan provides a clear roadmap. It sets ambitious milestones to be met by the government of Syria."

According to OPCW, the "most critical" chemicals will be transported out of Syria by Dec. 31, 2013, and the rest will be transported for destruction outside its territory to ensure their destruction in the "safest and soonest manner", and no later than June 30, 2014.

The statement said that Uzumcu will present "a specific plan" for the destruction outside Syria, "which includes provisions for ensuring clear responsibility at each stage for all chemicals and takes into account all relevant consideration, including target dates, requirements for safety and security, and overall costs."

Reporting on the progress on the ground, the director general informed the Executive Council that the OPCW-UN Joint Mission was able to verify the destruction of over 60 percent of Syria's declared unfilled munitions to date.

Addressing the Council, OPCW-UN Joint Mission Special Coordinator Sigrid Kaag said "I wish to express my sincere appreciation for all the States who have supported this mission - through both financial and in-kind contributions."

"I am currently reaching out to others to consider joining this international effort, which is key to the successful implementation of the Executive Council's decision," said Kaag.