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Dominican Republic to Become 187th State Party to the Chemical Weapons Convention
The Dominican Republic has deposited its instrument of ratification of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) with the Secretary General of the United Nations and the Convention will enter into force for the country on 26 April 2009, making the Dominican Republic the 187th State Party to the CWC. This will reduce to eight the number of countries that still remain outside the Convention*.
The OPCW Director-General, Ambassador Rogelio Pfirter, welcomed the decision as a significant step in strengthening global peace and security. “I congratulate the government of the Dominican Republic for its decision to ratify the Convention, which draws us closer to the goal of realising a universal ban on chemical weapons, and we call upon those remaining States that have not yet adhered to the CWC to do so without further delay,” Ambassador Pfirter said.
The Convention aims at eliminating an entire category of weapons of mass destruction by prohibiting the development, production, stockpiling and use of chemical weapons by States Parties, which are required to take the steps necessary to enforce that prohibition within their jurisdiction. All States Parties are obliged to declare and destroy any stockpiles of chemical weapons they may hold and any facilities which produced them, as well as any chemical weapons they abandoned on the territory of other States Parties in the past.
All States Parties declare to the OPCW the extent of specific activities which could pose a risk to the object and purpose of the Convention. These activities are then subject to international verification and monitoring by the OPCW Secretariat, primarily through inspections, to ensure non-proliferation. States Parties also agree to abide by a verification regime for certain toxic chemicals and their precursors in order to ensure that such chemicals are only used for purposes not prohibited.
As a State Party, the Dominican Republic will benefit from the OPCW’s international cooperation and assistance programmes, which provide support in the establishment of an effective National Authority and in drafting and enacting necessary legislation to implement the CWC at the national level. Such legislation enables States Parties to detect, prosecute and punish any breach of the chemical weapons ban committed on their territory or by their nationals anywhere in the world.
In addition, the OPCW provides support to facilitate annual declarations and OPCW inspections, as well as monitoring chemical transfers and maintaining relevant chemical transfer restrictions. Member States receive training and may draw upon the Organisation’s expertise to enhance their national civil protection in the event of a chemical weapons attack or the threat of such an attack.
* Angola, the Bahamas, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Egypt, Israel, Myanmar, Somalia and Syria
For further information, please contact OPCW Public Affairs. +31 (0) 70 416 3242, firstname.lastname@example.org | ORGANISATION FOR THE PROHIBITION OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS, Johan de Wittlaan 32, 2517 JR The Hague, The Netherlands
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