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The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Barbara Woodward (United Kingdom):

On the twenty-fifth anniversary of the entry in to force of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction, the members of the Security Council reaffirmed their commitment, in line with the Convention, to exclude completely the possibility of the use of chemical weapons anywhere, at any time, by anyone, under any circumstance and to achieve the complete destruction of chemical weapons stockpiles and abandoned chemical weapons.  They condemned the use of these inhumane and indiscriminate weapons during the 25 years since the entry into force of the Convention.

The members of the Security Council stressed that no one should, under any circumstances:  develop, produce, otherwise acquire, stockpile or retain chemical weapons, or transfer, directly or indirectly, chemical weapons to anyone; use chemical weapons; engage in any military preparations to use chemical weapons; or assist, encourage or induce, in any way, anyone to engage in any activity prohibited to a State party under the Convention.

The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that the development, production and use of chemical weapons, as prohibited by the Convention, remains a clear threat to international peace and security.  They further reaffirmed their continued determination for the sake of all humanity, to exclude completely the possibility of the use of chemical weapons, through the implementation of the Convention, thereby complementing the obligations assumed under the Geneva Protocol of 1925.

The members of the Security Council urged all States that have not yet done so to become parties to the Convention without delay.

The members of the Security Council recognized the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) as the organization given responsibility by States parties to ensure the impartial, independent and professional implementation of all provisions of the Convention including:  the highest standards of international verification of compliance with it; support to national implementation; and international cooperation and exchange of scientific and technical information in the field of chemical activities for purposes not prohibited under the Convention.

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