OPCW should not be used for political gains, Iran says

April 20, 2018

The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons should not be used as tool for political gains of state parties, and Iranian diplomat has said.

“The OPCW as the competent authority in the field of chemical weapons shall not be used as an instrument to confirm the political intentions of the States Parties,” Alireza Jahangiri, Iran’s representative at the OPCW, said on Thursday.

Following is full text of his speech published by IRNA published on Friday:

At the outset I would like to appreciate the Director General for providing the States Parties with the report on the activities of the technical assistance visit (TAV/02/18) team in relation to the Salisbury incident on 4 March 2018.

My delegation has already declared its position on this issue in 87th Session of the Executive Council. Unfortunately, in that session, we again witnessed quite a number of allegations and accusations made before receiving the results of the findings of the OPCW team. This should not be a precedent in future work of this Organization. The States Parties fairly expect that in cases such as Salisbury incident in which there is an allegation of the use of chemical weapons against another State Party, the work of the OPCW proceeds in its regular course and after the end of the process and issuance of the final report by the team, the States Parties, invoking the report, offer their arguments.

It is also expected that the OPCW, implement its activities such as collecting and analyzing information and samples independently without relying upon the findings of other sources.

The OPCW as the competent authority in the field of chemical weapons shall not be used as an instrument to confirm the political intentions of the States Parties. Political disputes shall be settled through their methods and claims against a State Party to Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) on the use of chemical weapons or toxic chemicals should be dealt with through the existing mechanisms and provisions of the CWC.

We are of the view that the current case of Salisbury incident could be settled in accordance with Article IX of the Convention either through bilateral negotiation between two sides based on a cooperative approach, sound arguments and reasons and without any prejudgement or with the help of the OPCW. 

In closing may I request that this statement be circulated as an official document of the 59th Meeting Executive Council and be posted on both the external and public website of the OPCW.

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