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Tuesday, April 20th, 2021

Future direction of OPCW to be discussed in upcoming conference, review sessions

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The next five years of focus for the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) will be decided at the 23rd session of the Conference of the States Parties and fourth Review Conference beginning today.

For the next two weeks, member states will discuss budgets, programs, cooperation efforts, and outreach activities. The Review Conference will look over the last five years of OPCW activities before laying out the direction for the future. In all, 159 of the 193 member states are participating in the Conference of the States Parties, while 152 will participate in the Review Conference.

“The consistent support of States Parties has made the Convention one of the most effective and successful international treaties in the field of disarmament and non-proliferation,” Fernando Arias, Director-General of the OPCW, said in opening statements.

In his time on the floor, the Director-General stressed adaptation to prevent chemical weapons re-emergence, as seen in Syria in the last few years. He also called for strengthening global chemical security through collaboration and addressing threats.

On Nov. 26, delegations and participants present will also honor victims of chemical weapons, demonstrating their commitment to working against chemical weapons in all circumstances.