Five Syrian government officials participated in the National Legal Workshop for the Syrian Arab Republic on Implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) at OPCW Headquarters in The Hague, from 12-15 November.
The four-day programme, conducted by the Technical Secretariat of the OPCW, featured presentations on a range of issues related to implementation of the CWC including prohibited activities, inspections, declarations and the importance of national implementing legislation.
Syrian government officials worked with experts from the Technical Secretariat to produce a draft text of its national implementing legislation as well as an action plan outlining the steps required for its adoption. The plan includes follow-up actions and an indicative timeline, and will serve as a reference for the Technical Secretariat to continue to engage with Syrian authorities on the process.
The workshop was attended by senior Syrian officials from the Ministry of Economy and Foreign Trade, Ministry of Local Administration and the Environment, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Customs, and Ministry of Industry.
National Legal Workshops are organised by the Technical Secretariat in cooperation with States Parties in order to equip representatives of the latter with the technical capacity and requisite skills to prepare a draft of national implementing legislation and to pursue its adoption upon their return to their home country, or to identify existing gaps in their national legal and regulatory frameworks on the CWC in order to address them.
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 97% 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.