Delivered by: Ms. Shahad Matar, Spokesperson
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I take this opportunity to welcome our new colleagues to the Council (Japan, Switzerland, Malta, Mozambique, and Ecuador,) and wish you, Mr. President, success in your presidency this month. I also thank Mr. Adedeji Ebo, Deputy High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, for his briefing.
We recall that in January 1993, the Secretary-General opened the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in Paris for signature. It was signed by 130 countries, indicating a broad consensus in the international community, and making the treaty one of the most important historical achievements in the field of disarmament. However, during the first half of our Council membership we have noticed that the Syrian chemical file today is still, unfortunately, one of the most politicized files on this Council.
Once again, I would like to reiterate the UAE’s firm position in rejecting and condemning the use of chemical weapons, under any circumstances, by anyone, anywhere. Their use constitutes a flagrant violation of the provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention and international law.
Making tangible progress on this file requires engaging in constructive dialogue. From this standpoint, the UAE stresses the importance of communication and dialogue between the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and Syria. We call on the parties to work in a spirit based on the principles upon which the Organization for the Prohibition of Weapons was established in its technical nature, which includes a consensus-based approach and non-politicization. In this context, we welcome the agreement to send a reduced team to conduct limited activities in Syria this month, and we hope that bilateral consultations will be held as soon as possible.
In conclusion, Mr. President, the UAE stresses the importance of making progress on the Syria chemical weapons file, and in all tracks relating to the Syrian crisis.
Thank you, Mr. President.