Iraq Joins the Chemical Weapons Convention

Wednesday, 14 January 2009
The government of Iraq has deposited its instrument of accession to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) with the Secretary General of the United Nations and within 30 days, on 12 February 2009, will become the 186th State Party to the Convention

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is the implementing body for the Convention. The OPCW Director-General, Ambassador Rogelio Pfirter, welcomed Iraq’s decision as a significant step to strengthen global and regional efforts to prevent the spread and use of chemical weapons. 

“Iraq’s accession draws us closer to the Convention’s goal of the universal ban on chemical weapons, and we call upon those nine States that have not yet adhered to the Convention to do so without delay,” Ambassador Pfirter said.

The Convention aims to eliminate an entire category of weapons of mass destruction by prohibiting the development, production, acquisition, stockpiling, retention, transfer or use of chemical weapons by States Parties. States Parties, in turn, must take the steps necessary to enforce that prohibition within their jurisdiction. All States Parties to the Convention 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.

Iraq will now be eligible to benefit from the OPCW’s international cooperation and assistance programmes, which provide support in drafting and enacting the legislation necessary to implement the Convention at the national level. This 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 Organisation provides support in the practical implementation of the Convention’s stipulations, in particular, the establishment of an effective National Authority to facilitate annual declarations and OPCW inspections, as well as monitoring chemical transfers and maintaining relevant chemical transfer restrictions. Member States also 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.


For further information, please contact OPCW Public Affairs. +31 (0) 70 416 3242, public.affairs@opcw.org | ORGANISATION FOR THE PROHIBITION OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS, Johan de Wittlaan 32, 2517 JR The Hague, The Netherlands

Follow OPCW on Facebook and Twitter.

More news

OPCW Director-General Welcomes UN Security Council Resolution and OPCW Executive Council Decision; Pledges to Facilitate Verifiable Destruction of Libya’s Remaining Chemical Weapons

On 20 July, the Executive Council of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) adopted a decision calling for necessary international assistance in response to the Libyan Government of National Accord’s...22 July 2016Full story

To Prevent Destruction of Humankind, Science and Diplomacy Must Work Together, Says OPCW Director-General

“At every stage along the long road to ridding the world of chemical weapons, scientists have been an indispensable partner of the OPCW”, said Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of...22 July 2016Full story

Scientists Are at the Frontline of Peace, Says OPCW Verification Director

“Under OPCW auspices, scientists are taking the lead in promoting science working in the service of peace and security,” said Mr Philippe Denier, Director of Verification Division of the Organisation for the Prohibition of...19 July 2016Full story

Police First Responders from Asia Get Ready to Confront Chemical Terrorism Emergencies

Use of protective equipment and operational procedures dealing with chemical terrorism incidents was at the core of an advanced training course for police first responders from Asia, held by the Organisation for the Prohibition...12 July 2016Full story

H.E. Mr Roberto Ochoa Madrid (Honduras)

H.E. Mr Roberto Ochoa Madrid, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Honduras to the OPCW, presented his credentials to the Director-General on 7 July 2016.07 July 2016Full story

H.E. Mrs Pema Choden (Bhutan)

H.E. Mrs Pema Choden, Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Bhutan to the OPCW, presented her credentials to the Director-General on 6 July 2016.06 July 2016Full story

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Canada Visits OPCW

The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, met today with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Canada, the Honourable Stéphane Dion, at OPCW Headquarters in The...05 July 2016Full story

National Authorities and Educators from Africa Partner to Improve Implementation of the Convention

Universities across Africa should incorporate more information about the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) into their curricula, concluded representatives of National Authorities and educators during a meeting in Johannesburg,...04 July 2016Full story

The State Secretary for Foreign Policy of Denmark Visits OPCW

The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, met today with the State Secretary for Foreign Policy of the Kingdom of Denmark, H.E. Ms Lone Dencker Wisborg, at...28 June 2016Full story

Director-General’s statement on behalf of the OPCW to commemorate the 1987 chemical weapon attack on Sardasht, Iran

Twenty-nine years ago, on 28 June 1987, the peaceful residents of the Iranian township of Sardasht became the victims of a merciless attack involving chemical weapons.  The attack brought death and suffering to countless...28 June 2016Full story

Displaying 1 to 10 of 1657
<< First < Previous 1-10 11-20 21-30 31-40 41-50 51-60 61-70 Next > Last >>