THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 24 March 2017 — The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, is honoured to announce the attendance of His Majesty King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands at the Commemorative Ceremony marking the 20th Anniversary of the entry into force of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) and the founding of the OPCW on Wednesday 26 April at the Ridderzaal (Hall of Knights) in The Hague.
During the ceremony, His Majesty the King together with the Director-General, will unveil a plaque in honour of the OPCW’s anniversary.
Following the welcoming remarks by the Director-General, the Commemorative Ceremony will feature statements by dignitaries including: Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, a United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Advocate; Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, H.E. Mr Bert Koenders; the Mayor of The Hague, H. E. Mrs Pauline Krikke; and the OPCW’s Chairperson of the Conference of the States Parties, H.E. Dr Christoph Israng. Permanent Representatives and other delegates from OPCW Member States, international organisations and civil society, as well as dignitaries from the Netherlands will also be in attendance.
The Ceremony will acknowledge OPCW’s progress in verifiably eliminating chemical weapons, its efforts to prevent their re-emergence and promote the use of chemistry for peaceful use.
Over the past twenty years, nearly 95 per cent of chemical weapon stockpiles declared by possessor states have been eliminated under the watchful eye of the OPCW. One hundred and ninety-two countries committing themselves to the Chemical Weapons Convention have made it possible for 98 per cent of the global population to live under the Convention’s protection.
This remarkable achievement is the result of a global endeavour – involving governments, chemical industry, scientists, and civil society – to create and enforce the world’s most successful international disarmament treaty. For its extensive efforts in eliminating chemical weapons, the OPCW received the 2013 Nobel Prize for Peace.
It is expected that commemorative events will be held around the world by OPCW Member States and other partners through December. These events will highlight the important role played by the OPCW to achieve a world permanently free of chemical weapons.
- Twenty Years of OPCW – Anniversary Website with Resources
- Royal House of the Netherlands: King to attend OPCW’s 20th anniversary commemoration in The Hague
- OPCW Fact Sheets