Time has come to eliminate all weapons of mass destruction: UN chief

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Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

The time has come to get rid of all weapons of mass destruction, including chemical weapons, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told reporters on Monday.

He said three quarters of the world's declared chemical weapons stockpiles have been eliminated.

And, the Convention banning these weapons has been signed by 188 States Parties.

However, he added, eight states, including Syria, are not yet party to that convention.

Mr. Ban said he has expressed grave concerns about statements made by representatives of the Syrian government regarding the existence of chemical weapons and their possible use.

"I once again emphasize the fundamental responsibility of the Syrian Government to ensure the safety and security of any such stockpiles. The use of such weapons would be an outrageous crime with dire consequences. Chemical weapons simply have no place in the 21st century. Progress in this vital area will help generate momentum to meet our goal of eliminating all weapons of mass destruction. The time has come."

(Duration: 29")

This year marks the 15th Anniversary of the Chemical Weapons Convention.

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