UN / SYRIA CHEMICAL WEAPONS

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05-Jan-2022 00:03:11
The High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, Izumi Nakamitsu, told the Security Council that “at this stage, the declaration submitted by the Syrian Arab Republic, cannot be considered accurate and complete” in accordance with the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). UNIFEED

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STORY: UN / SYRIA CHEMICAL WEAPONS
TRT: 03:11
SOURCE: UNIFEED
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LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / RUSSIAN / ARABIC / NATS

DATELINE: 05 JANUARY 2022, NEW YORK CITY / FILE

SHOTLIST:

FILE – NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, exterior United Nations Headquarters

05 JANUARY 2022, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, Security Council
3. Med shot, Council President
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Izumi Nakamitsu, High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, United Nations:
“At this stage, the declaration submitted by the Syrian Arab Republic cannot be considered accurate and complete in accordance with the Chemical Weapons Convention.”
5. Med shot, Syrian representative
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Izumi Nakamitsu, High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, United Nations:
“The OPCW Secretariat has not yet received the requested declaration from the Syrian Arab Republic on all undeclared types and quantities of nerve agents produced and/or weaponised at the former chemical weapons production facility (CWPF) that was declared by the Syrian Arab Republic as never having been used to produce and/or weaponize chemical warfare agents. I have also been advised that the OPCW Technical Secretariat has not yet received a response from the Syrian Arab Republic on the requests for information and documentation regarding the damage caused during an attack on 8 June 2021 to a military facility that housed a declared former chemical weapons production facility.”
7. Wide shot, Council
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Permanent Representative to the United Nations, United States of America:
“We continue to witness Syria’s complete disregard for its obligations and deliberate attempts to delay and obstruct the OPCW’s work. The OPCW still assesses that Syria’s declaration cannot be considered accurate and complete in accordance with the obligations under the Chemical Weapons Convention and Security Council Resolution 2118. We should not be fooled by Syria’s veneer of cooperation while it continues its obfuscating narrative.”
9. Wide shot, Council
10. SOUNDBITE (Russian) Dmitry Polyanskiy, First Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Russian Federation:
“The so called Syrian chemical dossier has lately lost even the appearance of impartiality and the objective establishment of facts, which could confirm the use of chemical weapons in this country. Today, it's no more than simply another lever to use by our Western colleagues to criticize Syria in order to prove what cannot be proven.”
11. Wide shot, Council
12. SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Bassam Sabbagh, Permanent Representative of Syria to the United Nations:
“Syria rejects any attempts to question the Syrian declaration and Syria's cooperation with the OPCW and its technical Secretariat. We reject any baseless accusations that rely on erroneous information, and any attempts to jump into conclusions based on misinterpretations and probabilities without relying on accurate physical evidence. Some of the technical issues discussed between the Syrian National Authority and the technical Secretariat are subject to multiple and varying scientific interpretations. They must be discussed and examined in detail and they cannot be settled hastily or selectively.”
13. Wide shot, Council

STORYLINE:

The High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, Izumi Nakamitsu, today (5 Jan) told the Security Council that “at this stage, the declaration submitted by the Syrian Arab Republic, cannot be considered accurate and complete” in accordance with the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC).

Presenting the monthly report by the Director General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on the elimination of the Syrian chemical weapons programme, Nakamitsu said, “the OPCW Secretariat has not yet received the requested declaration from the Syrian Arab Republic on all undeclared types and quantities of nerve agents produced and/or weaponised at the former chemical weapons production facility (CWPF) that was declared by the Syrian Arab Republic as never having been used to produce and/or weaponize chemical warfare agents.”

Also, she said, the OPCW Technical Secretariat “has not yet received a response from the Syrian Arab Republic on the requests for information and documentation regarding the damage caused during an attack on 8 June 2021 to a military facility that housed a declared former chemical weapons production facility.”

United States Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said, “we continue to witness Syria’s complete disregard for its obligations and deliberate attempts to delay and obstruct the OPCW’s work.”

Thomas-Greenfield said, “we should not be fooled by Syria’s veneer of cooperation while it continues its obfuscating narrative.”

For his part, Russian Ambassador Dmitry Polyanskiy said, “the so called Syrian chemical dossier has lately lost even the appearance of impartiality and the objective establishment of facts, which could confirm the use of chemical weapons in this country. Today, it's no more than simply another lever to use by our Western colleagues to criticize Syria in order to prove what cannot be proven.”

Syrian Ambassador Bassam Sabbagh rejected “any attempts to question the Syrian declaration and Syria's cooperation with the OPCW and its technical Secretariat” as well as “any baseless accusations that rely on erroneous information, and any attempts to jump into conclusions based on misinterpretations and probabilities without relying on accurate physical evidence.”

Sabbagh said, “some of the technical issues discussed between the Syrian National Authority and the technical Secretariat are subject to multiple and varying scientific interpretations. They must be discussed and examined in detail and they cannot be settled hastily or selectively.”

The OPCW has been actively involved in Syria since its accession to the CWC in 2013.
The OPCW-UN Joint Mission was formally established on 16 October 2013 to oversee the timely elimination of the chemical weapons programme of the Syrian Arab Republic in the safest and most secure manner possible.

The OPCW Fact-Finding Mission (FFM) was set up in 2014 to establish facts surrounding allegations of the use of toxic chemicals, reportedly chlorine, for hostile purposes in the Syrian Arab Republic.

The Declaration Assessment Team (DAT) was established 2014 to engage the relevant Syrian authorities to resolve the identified gaps and inconsistencies in the Syrian declaration.

The OPCW-UN Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) was established by the UN Security Council to identify the perpetrators of the chemical weapon attacks confirmed by the Fact-Finding Mission. The JIM presented its reports to the Security Council and informed the OPCW. The JIM’s mandate expired in November 2017.

In 2018, OPCW Technical Secretariat was tasked with new responsibilities including investigating and identifying the perpetrators of chemical weapons attacks in the Syrian Arab Republic.

The Investigation and Identification Team (IIT) began its work in 2019 and is responsible for identifying the perpetrators of the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic.
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