THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 22 March 2018 — The President of the French Republic, H.E. Mr Emmanuel Macron, visited yesterday the Headquarters of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in The Hague.
President Macron met with the Director-General of the OPCW, Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, who briefed him on the achievements and challenges in the implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), including OPCW’s activities in the Syrian Arab Republic, as well as on current challenges and future priorities of the Organisation. The Director-General thanked France for its continued support to the Organisation.
President Macron stated: “The OPCW holds an essential place and plays a fundamental role in our fight against the use of chemical weapons. France will strongly and clearly always support the OPCW’s work so that these unacceptable actions stop and so that impunity does not exist. You can count on our resolute commitment.”
The Director-General expressed: “Today, we have reiterated our support to uphold the international norm against the use of chemical weapons, as well as our readiness for sustained vigilance to prevent the re-emergence of such weapons.”
President Macron was accompanied by the Permanent Representative to the OPCW and Ambassador of France to the Netherlands, H.E. Mr Philippe Lalliot; the Diplomatic Advisor to the President of the French Republic, Mr Philippe Etienne; and other members of the delegation.
France joined the Chemical Weapons Convention in 1997. France is a member of the Executive Council, the OPCW’s executive organ, which is charged with promoting the effective implementation of and compliance with the Chemical Weapons Convention as well as supervising the activities of the Technical Secretariat.
As the implementing body for the Chemical Weapons Convention, the OPCW oversees the global endeavour to permanently eliminate chemical weapons. Since the Convention’s entry into force in 1997 – with its 192 States Parties – it is the most successful disarmament treaty eliminating an entire class of weapons of mass destruction.
Over 96 per cent of all chemical weapon stockpiles declared by possessor States have been destroyed under OPCW verification. For its extensive efforts in eliminating chemical weapons, the OPCW received the 2013 Nobel Prize for Peace.