THE HAGUE, Netherlands–27 November 2020–The Mayor of the Municipality of The Hague, H.E. Mr Jan van Zanen, met today with the Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), H.E. Mr Fernando Arias, at OPCW Headquarters in The Hague.
The Director-General and the Mayor discussed ways to further develop collaboration between the OPCW and the Municipality, particularly in raising awareness among The Hague citizens about the Chemical Weapons Convention and OPCW’s work. Director-General Arias briefed the Mayor on the progress of the construction of a new facility, the OPCW Centre for Chemistry and Technology.
Mayor van Zanen stated: “We are proud of the fact that the OPCW is based here, in our city. In The Hague, tens of thousands of people – in more than 200 international organisations and research institutes – are hard at work to create a better world. The OPCW greatly contributes to The Hague’s reputation as the international city of peace and justice.”
Director-General Arias expressed: “The OPCW is pleased to be located in The Hague, a city steeped in the tradition of international peace and justice. The Hague Municipality is not only our host but also a vital partner in a range of projects including the prestigious OPCW-The Hague Award. We also enjoy a very special relationship with our neighbours, particularly through the Municipality’s annual International Open Day, where we invite citizens to visit our Headquarters and learn more about our work.”
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 98% of all declared chemical weapon stockpiles have been destroyed under OPCW verification. For its extensive efforts in eliminating chemical weapons, the OPCW received the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.