Netherlands: Russian delegation warns against politisation of OPCW

The Russian delegation urged OPCW to fulfill its intrinsic obligations and stay away from dealing with political issues as they spoke at a press-conference on the sidelines of the 23rd Conference of the States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention in the OPCW Headquarters in The Hague, on Tuesday.

“All possible has to be done to get it back on track so that it works as the organisation fostering chemical disarmament and preventing any chemical weapon from being ever produced again, which encourages international cooperation,” stated Alexander Shulgin, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the OPCW.

Vice-Minister of Industry and Trade of Russia Georgy Kalamanov emphasised that the OPCW is experiencing an internal split after the vote on the Russia-Chinese Initiative proposing to create a working group, which would verify the compliance of an attributive mechanism with the Chemical Weapons Convention’s provisions.

“The score which stands at 81 versus 71, and we do not mention the states which are not present or those which did not show their posture on the draft. It is a grave rift which, in our opinion, increasingly moves the OPCW away from the issues it has to solves,” he noted.

Raising the issue of the Novichok nerve agent’s origin, Victor Kholstov, Head of Treaty Obligations Implementation Department of Russia’s Ministry of Industry and Trade, said that Russia found the information confirming its production in the USA and the Czech Republic.

“Besides that, we scrutinised all what has been developed in this field and discovered a big portion of chemicals which were patented as nerve agents in the USA in the 80s,” he stated adding that Russia is going to submit to the OPCW a full report on Novichok’s development by the Western countries.

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