Wednesday, February 24, 2010
China, NAM: Clear US chemical weapons stockpile
China and members of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) have expressed concern about the United States' lack of inclination to empty its chemical weapons stockpile.
The concern was highlighted in a statement that was issued during a council meeting of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) at The Hague.
NAM member states and officials from Beijing demanded that Washington fulfill the commitments it has made under the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) by the end of an April 29, 2012 deadline.
In the statement, they also expressed serious concern that 13 years since the coming into effect of the CWC, 42 percent of the world's chemical weapons still remained in storage.
The 59th session of the 40-member OPCW Executive Council, convened on Tuesday. The meeting is expected to go on for another three days.
The OPCW is an international agency with 188 members that aims to promote the CWC — a treaty that mandates the elimination of “the scourge of chemical weapons forever” and “the destruction of the declared chemical weapons stockpiles within stipulated deadlines.”
The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) is an international organization of states that consider themselves not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. China is an observer state.