OPCW director-general opens international symposium

Ambassador Ahmet uzumcu, director-general of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, opened the 11th International Symposium on Protection against Chemical and Biological Warfare Agents in Stockholm on Monday.

The OPCW is an intergovernmental organization that promotes and makes sure countries are adhering to the Chemical Weapons Convention. The CWC prohibits the use of chemical weapons and asks countries to destroy any stockpiles of them. The OPCW works in cooperation with the United Nations and is headquartered in Hague, Netherlands.

The International Symposium on Protection against Chemical and Biological Warfare Agents is an event organized by the Swedish Defence Research Agency. uzumcu gave the opening address at the symposium and said the CWC is a permanent barrier against chemical weapons. He stressed the necessity for all chemical weapons to be banned, not just the ones that are listed in the CWC, which he believes must still be strengthened and preserved for international peace and security.

uzumcu also met with the state secretary for foreign affairs, Frank Belfrage, and the director-general of FOI, Jan-Olof Lind. After meeting with them, uzumcu participated in a discussion with Swedish authorities, which was hosted by Christer Ahlström, director-general of the Swedish Export Controls and Non-Proliferation Agency.