OPCW's uzumcu and EC delegation visit China to inspect chemical weapon destruction

Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons Director General Ambassador Ahmet uzumcu and a delegation of Executive Council representatives recently visited the People's Republic of China to inspect chemical weapon destruction.

The leaders visited a facility in Haerbaling, Jilin Province between September 9 and 13 to evaluate the destruction, recovery and excavation of abandoned chemical weapons stored at Haerbaling by Japan during World War II. This was the first ever EC delegation visit to China, a decision made by the Executive Council in July 2012.

Executive Council Vice-Chair Ambassador Miguel Calahorrando Camino of Ecuador led the delegation. Representatives from each of the OPCW regional sectors were present, along with other observers and representatives from interested States Parties.

"We want to thank the Governments of China and Japan for having arranged this visit," Calahorrano said. "The EC found it most informative in understanding the complexities surrounding the destruction of ACWs abandoned by Japan on the territory of China."

Since July, approximately 37,000 ACWs of the 50,000 recovered across 19 provinces in China have been destroyed at the Nanjing Mobile Destruction Facility in Jiangsu Province and Shijazhuang MDF in Hebei Province. Calahorrano commended China on its work and urged a prompt destruction of the remaining ACWs.

Under the Chemical Weapons Convention provisions, Japan is responsible to provide all financial, technical and miscellaneous additional resources necessary for the destruction of the ACWs.