OPCW holds regional workshop in Africa

The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons recently held a regional workshop on assistance and protection against chemical weapons for representatives of state parties in Africa.

The workshop, co-organized by the government of Mazambique and the OPCW in Maputo, was held from March 18 through March 20. A total of 28 participants from 17 state parties participated in the workshop.

Conducted under the OPCW's Program to Strengthen Cooperation with Africa, the workshop was designed for planners and managers who are responsible for protection programs against chemical weapons or who are involved in chemical response activities.

Information was provided at the workshop on the Chemical Weapons Convention and its provisions with a special focus on the rights and obligations of state parties under Article X, submission of declarations of protection programs, analysis of Article X weaknesses and problem areas, an overview of assistance and protection activities in the region, and development of emergency response plans.

Additionally, representatives from African state parties made presentations to share experiences and lessons learned from their respective countries.

Member countries taking part in the workshop include Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo Brazzaville, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.