Statement to the Fifty-Third Session of the Executive Council of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) [open pdf - 200KB]
This is the statement to the Fifty-Third Session of the Executive Council of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)in The Hague, Netherlands on June 24, 2008. From the text: "The Second Review Conference marked an important milestone after almost eleven years of the Chemical Weapons Convention. It was quite an ordeal for those of us who participated, with seemingly endless papers and positions, some heated arguments, incredibly long days and a couple of sleepless nights. But what we produced in that two-week ordeal is a reaffirmation of the Convention, a strong renewal of the commitment by all States Parties to the purposes of the Convention and the implementation of all of its provisions. We set out some guidelines for the future of this Organization, demonstrating that it is a living entity, continuing in its work, adjusting to changing circumstances, and thriving. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons will not reach its end when all the chemical weapons are destroyed, although that will be a remarkable historic event to celebrate. Any who hold the view that destruction of declared stockpiles will signal the end of the Chemical Weapons Convention are sorely mistaken. The OPCW will continue to have a critical role, long after disarmament, in assuring that chemical weapons will never again be developed, produced or used. The States Parties affirmed this ongoing and permanent non-proliferation role for the Organization in the Report of the Second Review Conference."
U.S. Department of State Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation: http://www.state.gov/t/isn/