Ban Ki-moon speaks on the Day of Remembrance for All Victims of Chemical Warfare

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said during observance of the Day of Remembrance for All Victims of Chemical Warfare on Monday that the deceased lay dead without honor until chemical weapons have been eradicated.

"This year's observance is especially timely, as the spectre of chemical weapons is once again casting its ominous shadow," Ban said. "Recent allegations of the use of these indiscriminate and morally repugnant weapons in Syria serve as a reminder of the continuing vital importance of the Chemical Weapons Convention.

The CWC provides guidelines for disarmament of chemical weapons, while also assisting in the peaceful uses of chemistry. Ban said the CWC was "symbolic," and represents international commitment to refrain using the destructive technology.

This year, nearly 80 percent of the international stockpile of chemical weapons has already been disarmed. Ban said this is a huge success for the CWC and reiterates its efficacy in reaching its goals.

"But, as current events attest, we must stay vigilant," Ban said. "Until the Convention is universal and the last stockpiles have been destroyed, our debt to the victims of chemical warfare will remain unpaid."

Ban closed his address by asking the global community to increase their diligence in following the CWC and to increase disarmament efforts, including weapons of mass destruction. He also urged the community to help make the CWC a global initiative.

"This is how we can best honor past victims and liberate future generations from the threat of chemical weapons," Ban said.