More countries will agree to destroy chemical weapons

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Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons said several of the 12 countries will sign the anti-proliferation treaties for chemical weapons this year.

7 April 2008

THE HAGUE - Several of the 12 countries who have not signed anti-proliferation treaties for chemical weapons will do so this year, according to an international organisation working to eradicate their use.

The statement was made on Friday in The Hague by Rogelio Pfirter, director-general of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).

Pfirter was speaking at a press conference ahead of an international conference due to start on Monday.

The Dutch-based OPCW has been striving for the destruction of all existing chemical weapons and a complete stop to the production of new ones since 1997.

The OPCW has 183 members. Many member countries destroyed their stores of chemical weapons or have made a start on doing so.

On Friday, Pfirter expressed his optimism about the chances of realising a complete ban on chemical weapons.

"Our treaty is the only (one) that succeeds in banning weapons of mass destruction," he said.

But he also stressed the need to continue efforts to convince all member countries to implement the OPCW-treaty in a uniform way.

[dpa / Expatica]

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