Qatar has affirmed its support for the continuation of the joint mechanism of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and the United Nations in Syria until those responsible for the use of chemical weapons are identified and brought to justice.
It reiterated its commitment to its international obligations to maintain peace and security in the world, combat terrorism in all its forms and contribute to the stability, security and prosperity of humanity.
HE Sheikh Jassim bin Mohamed al-Thani, Qatar's permanent representative to OPCW, made the remarks at the 22nd session of the conference of the states parties to the convention on the prohibition of the development, production, use and destruction of chemical weapons in The Hague.
Since Qatar joined the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), HE Sheikh Jassim bin Mohamed al-Thani said, it has made great efforts in implementing all the articles of the convention and supporting its activities, adding that in implementation of Article 7, the National Committee for the Prohibition of Weapons (NCPW) was established in 2004 to be the body responsible for taking measures for the co-ordination, implementation and follow-up of the procedures of the convention inside the country and abroad.
In order to complete the legislative system, Qatar issued Law No 17 of 2007 on the prohibition of chemical weapons, which was amended by Law No 16 of 2013, the permanent representative said.
He pointed to the establishment of the Doha Regional Centre for the Training of Conventions on Weapons of Mass Destruction in 2012 in co-operation with OPCW as the only centre of its kind in the Middle East and the Asian continent, noting that Qatar organised through the centre 26 programmes in co-operation with the technical secretariat of OPCW.
He thanked to OPCW for its confidence in hosting and organising these events.
HE Sheikh Jassim said that, since its establishment, the centre has organised training and awareness activities at the national level for all sectors of the society, schools and universities students, workers in the chemical industries, chemical trade and civil defence companies, confirming that Qatar was a pioneer in education programmes and external communication.
The Qatari official stressed that Doha shares OPCW its interest in planning for the future by supporting the activities of the next phase, which required the building of capacities in all areas of technology, chemical safety and security and the establishment of assistance and protection measures against chemical weapons, with the peaceful use of chemistry in the service of humanity through the application and activation of Article 11 of the convention.
HE Sheikh Jassim expressed Qatar's praise for the efforts and achievements of OPCW regarding the measures it took to destroy 96% of the world's chemical weapons.
He also expressed Qatar's appreciation for efforts to destroy the declared Syrian chemical weapons, whether the chemicals or the production facilities, and for the associated verification and control mechanisms.
HE Sheikh Jassim added that the Qatari delegation has been briefed on the conclusions of the report of the OPCW fact-finding mission in Syria dated November 2, 2017, which refers to the use of sarin as a chemical weapon in Al Lataminah village in Syria on March 30, 2017.
The Qatari delegation was briefed on the joint investigation mechanism between OPCW and the United Nations, he said.
The permanent representative said Qatar condemns the use of chemical weapons, which represents a violation of the convention and the UN Security Council Resolution 2118 (2013), the resolutions of OPCW executive council, and all established international measures and foundations.
HE Sheikh Jassim bin Mohamed al-Thani said that the unresolved issues regarding Syria's declaration and its related statements contained in the report of October 4, 2017 by the director general of OPCW are still standing.
He reiterated Qatar's support to the director general to continue the work of the fact-finding mission in Syria and the assessment team of the organisation until the executive council decides that all concerns regarding Syria's acquisition and use of chemical weapons are allayed.
Qatar, he said, is asking the director general to keep the relevant information and to make them available to the United Nations General Assembly according to Resolution 71/248 (2016) and the mechanism of inquiry for the implementation of its tasks, renewing Doha's invitation to the states that had not yet joined the CWC to do that so that international peace and security would prevail.
HE Sheikh Jassim expressed Qatar's desire that all countries entirely destroy the stockpiles of chemical weapons and build a world free of weapons of mass destruction, in which love, brotherhood and justice would prevail and the convention would become a symbol of peace and an example.
He congratulated the Moroccan ambassador Abdelouahab Bellouki for successfully heading the session, expressing his utmost trust of the ambassador's skill and capability to effectively contribute to the session.
He also thanked the Permanent Representative of Germany to the OPCW, Christoph Israng, for heading the previous session.
Qatar's permanent representative concluded by expressing Doha's gratitude and appreciation to OPCW Director General Ahmet Uzumcu and the technical secretariat team for their efforts to enhance the role of the organidation in carrying out its tasks.
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