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Thursday, June 20th, 2024

Russia completes destruction of chemical weapons

The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, made a statement Wednesday marking the destruction of the remainder of the chemical weapons possessed by the Russian Federation.

“The completion of the verified destruction of Russia’s chemical weapons programme is a major milestone in the achievement of the goals of the Chemical Weapons Convention,” Üzümcü said. “I congratulate Russia and I commend all of their experts who were involved for their professionalism and dedication.”

Russia destroyed under OPCW verification the remainder of its 39,967 metric tons of chemical weapons at the Kizner Chemical Weapons Destruction Facility in the Udmurt Republic.

Kizner was the last of Russia’s seven chemical destruction weapons facility in operation. The other six facilities, Kambarka, Gorny, Maradykovsky, Leonidovka, Pochep, and Shchuchye, completed work and closed in 2005 and 2015.

“I also express my appreciation to the States Parties that assisted the Russian Federation with its destruction program and thank the OPCW staff who verified the destruction,” Üzümcü said.

The OPCW is the implementing body for the Chemical Weapons Convention. Since the convention’s entry into force in 1997 with its 192 States Parties, 96 percent of chemical weapon stockpiles declared by possessor States Parties have been destroyed under OPCW verification.