Statement by Director-General Ahmet Üzümcü: Commemoration of the 1988 Halabja Chemical Weapons Attack

16 March 2016
OPCW Director-General Ahmet Üzümcü

OPCW Director-General Ahmet Üzümcü

16 March 1988 marks the twenty-eighth anniversary of the brutal chemical weapons attack in the town of Halabja that claimed thousands of innocent lives. Those who survived remain forever scarred, in body and in spirit.

On behalf of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, I convey our deepest condolences and sympathies to the people of Halabja and assure them of our support.

The memory of Halabja serves as a painful reminder of the human cost claimed by these dreadful weapons.  It is our responsibility – to the victims and to the humanity in general – to ensure that no-one is ever again exposed to such untold suffering.

A complete and effective ban on the production and use of chemical weapons is a fitting memorial to the victims who suffered at the hands of these abhorrent weapons. Let us recommit ourselves that we would not allow anyone, under any circumstances, to use chemical weapons.