THE HAGUE, Netherlands —5 November 2018 — The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), H.E. Mr Fernando Arias, met with the United Kingdom’s Minister of State for Defence, the Rt Hon Earl Howe, and other senior government officials during a visit to the UK on 2 November.
During the meeting with Minister of State for Defence, the Director-General expressed his appreciation for UK’s support to OPCW and for UK’s commitment to the global norm against chemical weapons.
“The United Kingdom has greatly contributed to the undeniable progress in the implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention. Faced with today’s challenges, including the continued use of these horrific weapons, we must not allow any lessening in the resolve to make sure the Convention serves as a permanent barrier against chemical weapons”, stressed Mr Arias.
As the implementing body for the Chemical Weapons Convention, the OPCW, with its 193 Member States, oversees the global endeavour to permanently eliminate chemical weapons. Since the Convention’s entry into force in 1997, it is the most successful disarmament treaty eliminating an entire class of weapons of mass destruction.
Over 96% 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 Peace Prize.