THE HAGUE, Netherlands – 11 December 2019 – High-level policy-makers and stakeholders from States Parties discussed challenges and good practices in the process of adopting implementing legislation on the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) during the Global Stakeholders Forum which was held in The Hague from 3 to 5 December 2019.
In her opening remarks, OPCW Deputy Director-General, Ambassador Odette Melono, highlighted the critical role that implementing legislation plays in preventing the re-emergence of chemical weapons. “Comprehensive legislation is necessary to ensure that effective chemical security measures are in place to prevent toxic chemicals from being diverted to do harm,” said Ambassador Melono.
During the event, which was a follow-up to regional forums organized in 2016 and 2017, several States Parties that have yet to adopt comprehensive implementing legislation provided updates on their progress, discussed challenges and updated national roadmaps towards adoption. The Minister of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, the Honourable Mr Dennis Moses, participated in the Forum
Other States Parties which have already adopted CWC implementing legislation shared their experiences and lessons learned during the political and legislative process. The UN Security Council 1540 Committee also participated in the event and highlighted the importance of enhanced international cooperation.
Participants also engaged in a break-out group exercise and developed key messages that they could use in advocating for strengthened national implementation of the CWC with their respective governments and domestic stakeholders.
At the end of the Forum, participants identified the priority actions that they would implement at the national level to enable them to move forward in the legislative adoption process.
The following States Parties were represented at the Forum: Angola, Chile, Colombia, Georgia, Kenya, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Nigeria, Paraguay, the Philippines, Sierra Leone, Trinidad and Tobago and Uganda.
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.