Syria chemical weapons disarmament mission starts today
An international team of experts is about to reach Damascus on Tuesday to kick-start the mission to destroy Syria’s 1000-ton chemical weapons stockpile as stipulated by a joint US-Russia agreement.
Zee Media Bureau/Supriya Jha
Damascus: An international team of experts is about to reach Damascus on Tuesday to kick-start the mission to destroy Syria’s 1000-ton chemical weapons stockpile as stipulated by a joint US-Russia agreement.
A team of international chemical weapons inspectors from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OCPW) are expected to access all facilities of chemical arms within a month.
The mission is in line with a UN resolution passed last week according to which Syria must abide by the OCPW’s dismantling plan and allow the international experts to visit all chemical weapons storage sites.
The resolution also has a provision for punitive measures against Syria in case of any violation. The punitive measures may include sanctions or military action.
Speaking at the UN General assembly, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem today assured that Syria will co-operate with the mission.
The plan to destroy Syria’s massive chemical arms is first of its kind as it is the first time that the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has been asked to destroy a country`s chemical arms during a war.
Syria`s chemical weapons stockpile is believed to contain more than 1,000 tonnes of sarin, mustard gas and other banned lethal agents.
Syria chemical weapons issue created a furore in the international community when August 21 chemical attack, according to the US claimed 1429 lives, and was orchestrated by the regime.
Syria has now agreed to submit its weapons to the international community by the mid of 2014 as per a joint Russia-US plan.