UN Secretary-General’s Message on the Remembrance Day for all Victims of Chemical Warfare (29 April 2009)

Wednesday, 29 April 2009
The Day of Remembrance for all Victims of Chemical Warfare is an occasion to recall some of the greatest atrocities in human history, to assess our progress in preventing any recurrence, and to pledge to continue advancing this cause in the future.

Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary-General

The suffering of the victims of chemical warfare must be preserved in our collective memory. And we must pay tribute to their plight by taking all possible actions to honour the provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention, which entered into force on this day in 1997.

The Convention has set new standards for global disarmament and non-proliferation through verification in a non-discriminatory and multilateral manner. It establishes far-reaching rights and obligations to ensure that chemical weapons are effectively eliminated.

There are significant advances to report this year.

Membership in the Convention will increase to 188 States Parties with the recent ratification of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. Almost all of the States Parties have now established their National Authorities. Today, under the provision of the Chemical Weapons Convention, India becomes the third possessor State to have completed the destruction of its chemical weapons stockpiles.

This is welcome progress, but we cannot be complacent in the face of such a grave threat. Above all, we must bolster international efforts to prevent access to chemical weapons by terrorists or other non-State actors. Governments, international organizations and the private sector must all join forces to translate the Convention’s provisions into action.

The United Nations will continue to work together with the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the international community to promote full implementation and universal adherence to the Convention. In my capacity as Depositary, I urge those States that have not yet ratified or acceded to the Convention to do so as soon as possible.

On this Remembrance Day, let us honour the victims of chemical warfare by reaffirming our commitment to build a world where, in the words of the Convention, achievements in the field of chemistry are used exclusively for the benefit of mankind.


Categories: 29 April: Remembrance Day, International Cooperation, OPCW and the UN, Outreach, Universality

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

Latin American and Caribbean Industry Professionals Boost Skills on Chemical Disaster Risk Management

THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 4 August 2017 — Chemistry professionals from Latin America and the Caribbean are better equipped to implement the industry-related provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) after a seminar on...04 August 2017Full story

H.E. Ms Christine Weil (Germany)

H.E. Ms Christine Weil, Permanent Representative of Germany to the OPCW, presented her credentials to the Director-General on 2 August 2017.02 August 2017Full story

OPCW Launches 18th Edition of Associate Programme

THE HAGUE, Netherlands – 28 July 2017 – The 18th edition of the Associate Programme, a flagship capacity-building programme of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), commenced today at the Organisation’s...28 July 2017Full story

OPCW Director-General Calls for Ethics to Keep Pace with Technological Progress During Visit to Indonesia

THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 28 July 2017 — The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü visited Indonesia on 27 and 28 July where he met with Minister of Foreign...28 July 2017Full story

National Authorities from Africa Review Implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention and Region’s Needs

THE HAGUE, Netherlands – 27 July – Representatives of National Authorities from African States Parties convened at the 15th Regional Meeting in Banjul, The Gambia from 18 to 20 July, to review the achievements, explore the...27 July 2017Full story

OPCW Director-General Calls for Ethics in Science During Visit to Australia

THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 26 July 2017 — The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, visited Australia on 24 and 25 July. In Canberra, he met with the Secretary...26 July 2017Full story

H.E. Mr Jassim Bin Mohammed Bin Saud Al-Thani (Qatar)

H.E. Mr Jassim Bin Mohammed Bin Saud Al-Thani, Permanent Representative of Qatar to the OPCW, presented his credentials to the Director-General on 20 July 2017.20 July 2017Full story

Laboratories in Latin America and Spain Increase Analytical Capacity of Substances Relevant to Chemical Weapons Convention

THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 13 July 2017 — Analytical chemists from Latin America, the Caribbean and Spain advanced their skills in the analysis of chemicals controlled under the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), at a course...13 July 2017Full story

First Responders from Asia Acquire Keystone Skills in Assistance and Protection against Chemical Weapons

THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 10 July 2017 — First responders from Asian countries acquired fundamental knowledge on emergency assistance and protection against chemical weapons at an Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical...10 July 2017Full story

Medical Professionals Acquire Skills in Assistance for Victims of Chemical Emergencies

THE HAGUE, Netherlands – 7 July 2017 – Medical first responders from around the world are better equipped to successfully handle emergency medical assistance for victims of chemical incidents and attacks after a training held in...07 July 2017Full story

Displaying 1 to 10 of 1789
<< First < Previous 1-10 11-20 21-30 31-40 41-50 51-60 61-70 Next > Last >>