THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 15 March 2019 — The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), H.E. Mr Fernando Arias, and the Deputy Minister for Multilateral and Global Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea, H.E. Mr Jeong-sik Kang, met today at OPCW Headquarters in The Hague.
During the visit the Director-General and the Deputy Minister discussed the implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), concentrating on the Organisation’s work regarding Syria and its efforts to investigate and identify perpetrators of chemical weapons attacks. Both officials agreed on the need to promote universality of the Convention, as well as to strengthen international cooperation and assistance and protection against chemical weapons.
The Director-General also provided information about the progress of OPCW’s project to upgrade the OPCW Laboratory into a Centre for Chemistry and Technology, which the Republic of Korea has supported with a voluntary contribution.
Director-General Arias expressed: “South Korea’s strong commitment to the Chemical Weapons Convention and its readiness to contribute to OPCW’s activities merits the upmost recognition; such contributions make our shared goal of a world free of chemical weapons an achievable reality.”
The Deputy Minister stated: “Since the entry into force of the CWC, the Republic of Korea has been actively engaging with the OPCW in its efforts to permanently eliminate chemical weapons around the world. We reiterate our full commitment to the work of the OPCW and will continue to support the Organisation in its noble mission to make a world free of chemical weapons. “
The Republic of Korea joined the Chemical Weapons Convention in 1997 and is currently a member of the OPCW Executive Council.
As the implementing body for the Chemical Weapons Convention, the OPCW, with its 193 Members, 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.