top of page

Syria's failure to comply with the Chemical Weapons Convention

Statement by Ambassador Jonathan Allen, UK Chargé d’Affaires to the UN, at the Security Council briefing on chemical weapons in Syria


Syria's failure to comply with the Chemical Weapons Convention
Jonathan Allen, Photo Credit: UK Govt

Nov 8, London: (Transcript of the speech)

Thank you very much Madame President. Let me congratulate you on taking up your position. It is good to have a fellow Commonwealth member in the chair.


May I thank High Representative Nakamitsu for her briefing and thank through you the OPCW Director-General for his 85th monthly report and the OPCW Technical Secretariat for its ongoing work implementing professionally and dispassionately the tasks assigned to it by the OPCW Executive Council and Conference of States Parties.



On 8 April 2020, the OPCW Investigation and Identification Team issued its first report. In that report, it found the Syrian Arab Air Force responsible for three chemical attacks in Ltamenah in 2017 in which it used chlorine and sarin. These findings brought the number of chemical weapons attacks for which the UN and OPCW have found the Syrian regime responsible to seven. It was yet further evidence that Syria had retained a chemical weapons stockpile beyond the agreed date of destruction, as well as the intent and ability to produce and use them. It was yet further evidence that Syria’s initial declaration was incomplete and a reminder of the real threat that this posed to Syrians and to the international non-proliferation regime.


In response, in a decision on 9 July 2020, the OPCW Executive Council requested that the Syrian authorities declare the facilities used for the Ltamenah attacks, declare the chemical weapons it currently possessed and to resolve the outstanding issues with its initial declaration. On top of the 6 years Syria has already had to do this, the Executive Council granted an additional 90 days.



It is with great regret that, as confirmed by the OPCW Director-General on 14 October, Syria failed to take the required steps. It is with further regret that the Syrian regime did not even see fit to respond to the Director-General’s letter notifying it of the action Syria been requested to take.


We strongly condemn the failure of Syria to comply with yet another Executive Council Decision. As recommended in that decision, the OPCW Conference of States Parties should now take appropriate action to address Syria’s failure to comply with decisions of the Executive Council and the Chemical Weapons Convention.



That failure to comply with the 9 July decision represents yet another failure to comply with the fundamental terms of resolution 2118, the issue before the Council today. In that resolution, we decided that in the event of non-compliance, including the use of chemical weapons, we would impose measures under Chapter VII of the Charter. For the Security Council not to take action would be a dereliction of its duty and undermines its authority. It is incumbent on all of us to uphold the Security Council’s authority under the UN Charter. Syria’s continued non-compliance is a proven threat to international peace and security.


Turning to the Director-General’s monthly report, I want to welcome the ongoing tireless work of the OPCW Technical Secretariat, particularly in light of the limitations imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.



Regarding the work of the Declaration Assessment Team (DAT), we welcome that the DAT was able to travel to Syria at the end of September for further consultations and to resolve issues with samples collected in a previous deployment. Regarding the additional information and amendments to Syria’s declaration referenced in last month’s report, we understand that these are still undergoing assessment by the OPCW. We will wait for further reporting from the OPCW before welcoming any progress.


As the monthly report states, Syria’s declaration cannot be considered accurate and complete in accordance with the Chemical Weapons Convention, Executive Council decisions, and with resolution 2118 (2003). Further amendments to the Declaration are yet more evidence that the initial declaration was incomplete. I would like to stress once again, Syria needs to cooperate fully with the OPCW and make progress on all of the outstanding issues.



I would like if I might touch on some points raised by the Russian Ambassador. We in the UK are gravely concerned by the poisoning of Russian opposition politician Alexey Navalny with a nerve agent from the Novichok group. I’ll just remind colleagues on the Council that a similar chemical weapon, was used in Salisbury, UK, resulting in death and severe injury. It is unacceptable that these weapons have been retained and even worse that they have been used. Under the Chemical Weapons Convention, any poisoning of an individual through the use of a nerve agent is considered a use of chemical weapons. And as the Council reaffirmed last November in a Presidential Statement, any use of chemical weapons anywhere, at any time, by anyone, under any circumstance is unacceptable and is a threat to international peace and security and those responsible must be held to account. Russia must urgently conduct a full and transparent investigation into the use of a banned chemical weapon on its territory. We must not allow this behaviour to become normalised. Russia must fully cooperate with relevant institutions, including the UNSC.


I am afraid, Madam President, that it is not difficult to understand Russia’s motives for constantly attacking and seeking to undermine the OPCW.




Continue reading more from the below Tags-

1 view0 comments

Comments


Planner 5D- Interior design app

Planner 5D- Interior design app

Flipkart Online Shopping App

Flipkart Online Shopping App

World population to reach 8 billion this year, as the growth rate slows

July 12, 2022 at 6:57:56 AM

15 November 2022 is predicted to be the day that the global population reaches eight billion. The projection is revealed in the UN’s World Population Prospects 2022 report, which also shows that India is on course to surpass China as the world’s most populous country in 2023.

World population to reach 8 billion this year, as the growth rate slows

WHO: Nearly one billion people have a mental disorder

June 22, 2022 at 7:20:50 AM

Nearly one billion people worldwide suffer from some form of mental disorder, according to the latest UN data – a staggering figure that is even more worrying if you consider that it includes around one in seven teenagers.

WHO: Nearly one billion people have a mental disorder

What can the UN do? Check the top 5 questions answered

April 6, 2022 at 10:51:48 AM

The current war in Ukraine, following the Russian invasion, has sparked all sorts of questions about the United Nations, particularly the role of the Security Council, the General Assembly and the Secretary-General.

What can the UN do? Check the top 5 questions answered

Ukraine: UN’s Guterres joins call for Bucha war crimes probe

April 6, 2022 at 8:22:29 AM

UN chief António Guterres on Tuesday added his voice to the growing international calls for a war crimes investigation into the killing of civilians in the Ukrainian town of Bucha.

Ukraine: UN’s Guterres joins call for Bucha war crimes probe

Recent terrorist attacks in Israel undermine ‘prospects for peace’: Guterres

March 31, 2022 at 8:29:57 AM

Secretary-General António Guterres on Tuesday night condemned recent terrorist attacks in Israel that have claimed the lives of at least 11 Israeli citizens.

Recent terrorist attacks in Israel undermine ‘prospects for peace’: Guterres

China's BYD ceases to produce gasoline-powered vehicles

4/4/22, 7:00 AM

Chinese auto manufacturer BYD announced Sunday that it has already ceased the production of traditional gasoline-powered vehicles starting from March.

China's BYD ceases to produce gasoline-powered vehicles

Performance-oriented all-new ŠKODA SLAVIA 1.5 TSI Launched creates a segment of its own

3/27/22, 10:42 AM

All new ŠKODA SLAVIA 1.5 TSI starts at ₹ 16.19 lacs

Performance-oriented all-new ŠKODA SLAVIA 1.5 TSI Launched creates a segment of its own

CARS24 Raises $450 Million, Nearly Doubles Its Valuation To $1.84 Billion

9/25/21, 6:16 AM

CARS24, India’s leading e-commerce platform for pre-owned vehicles, announced today the closing of a $450M round of funding including a $340M Series F equity round alongside $110M debt from diversified financial institutions.

CARS24 Raises $450 Million, Nearly Doubles Its Valuation To $1.84 Billion

Tata Motors launches the ‘XPRES’ brand for fleet customers

7/18/21, 6:13 PM

Tata Motors, one of India’s leading automobile manufacturers, today announced the launch of a new brand ‘XPRES,’ exclusively for fleet customers.

Tata Motors launches the ‘XPRES’ brand for fleet customers

Audi India announces curated ownership plans for Audi e-tron and Audi e-tron Sportback customers

7/18/21, 5:56 PM

Special Service Plans, Extended Warranty and Buyback for a hassle-free ownership experience

Audi India announces curated ownership plans for Audi e-tron and Audi e-tron Sportback customers

TikTok hits 1 billion global active users

9/28/21, 8:56 AM

TikTok mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy.

TikTok hits 1 billion global active users

FACT CHECK: Crypto is increasingly being used for criminal activity and is a haven for illicit finance

6/23/21, 6:11 AM

Because cryptocurrency is still new, we are often asked about the biggest myths surrounding it. It’s common for a new market or product to confuse people until they get familiar with it. Think about Airbnb: the idea of staying in a stranger’s home seemed crazy until it didn’t.

FACT CHECK: Crypto is increasingly being used for criminal activity and is a haven for illicit finance

PUBG: NEW STATE surpasses 17 Million Google play store PRE-REGISTRATIONS following its recent ALPHA TEST

6/19/21, 4:40 AM

KRAFTON, Inc. to open pre-registration for the game on Apple’s App Store in Q3 2021

PUBG: NEW STATE surpasses 17 Million Google play store PRE-REGISTRATIONS following its recent ALPHA TEST
bottom of page