OPCW confirms Syrian destruction of chemical weapons plants

The Joint Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons - United Nations Mission said on Thursday that the Syrian Arab Republic has confirmed the functional destruction of equipment for the declared chemical weapons production facilities and mixing plants.

By completing this action, Syria has met the deadline set by the OPCW Executive Council.

OPCW Director-General Ahmet uzumcu welcomed back a group of inspectors who had been conducting verification work in Damascus since Oct. 1.

"On behalf of the OPCW, I thank you and all of our colleagues from the Joint OPCW-UN Mission who remain in Syria for your outstanding service," uzumcu said. "I salute the fortitude and courage you're all demonstrated in fulfilling the most challenging mission ever undertaken by this organization."

Member of the Joint OPCW-UN Mission have inspected 21 of 23 sites that were declared by Syria, and 39 of the 41 facilities located at those sites. The two remaining sites were not visited because of safety and security concerns.

Syria has declared those two remaining site to be abandoned and that the chemical weapons they contained were moved to other sites, which have been inspected.

Those in charge of the mission are satisfied in the verification that Syria's declared production and mixing equipment has been destroyed. No further inspections have been planned.