Syria Submits Revised Proposal to OPCW for
Removal of Chemicals and Accelerates Pace of Deliveries to Latakia.
Directly from the OPCW in The Hague.
The Syrian Arab Republic has submitted to the OPCW a revised proposal that aims to complete the removal of all chemicals from Syria before the end of April 2014.
The OPCW-UN Joint Mission also verified that two more consignments of chemicals have left the port of Latakia, including a quantity of mustard gas – a Priority 1 chemical – which was previously reported last Wednesday. Another movement, a significant consignment of other Priority 1 chemicals, is scheduled to arrive in Latakia during this week, which will bring the total number of movements thus far to six.
The six movements represent more than 35% of all chemicals that must be removed from Syria for destruction, including 23% of Priority 1 chemicals and 63% of Priority 2 chemicals. In addition, the OPCW has verified that Syria has destroyed in situ more than 93% of its stock of isopropanol.
In his report to the opening session of the Executive Council, Director-General Ahmet Üzümcü said that all materials and equipment required by Syria are now in place for the expeditious removal of its remaining chemicals, including armoured jackets for the protection of containers.
“Given delays since the lapse of the two target dates for removal, it will be important to maintain this newly created momentum,” the Director-General told the Council. “For its part, the Syrian Government has reaffirmed its commitment to implement the removal operations in a timely manner.”
The Special Coordinator for the OPCW-UN Joint Mission, Ms Sigrid Kaag, also briefed the Council on recent progress in the Syria mission.
“Nearly one third of Syria’s chemical weapons material has now been removed or destroyed,” the Special Coordinator told the Council. “This is good progress and I expect further acceleration and
intensification of effort.”
Prior to initiating operations in January to remove its chemicals, in late 2013 Syria completed the functional destruction of its chemical weapons production facilities, mixing and filling equipment, and all of its munitions that were designed for use with chemical warfare agents.