Vietnam condemns use of chemical weapons at UNSC discussion

Vietnam has reiterated the consistent policy in favour of non-proliferation and disarmament regimes, as well as the country’s support for the role of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in ridding the world of chemical weapons.

Speaking at a discussion of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) on the implementation of Resolution 2118 (2013) regarding the settlement of chemical weapons in Syria, Ambassador Pham Hai Anh, Deputy Permanent Representative of Vietnam to the UN voiced concern over the use of chemical weapons in Syria and the current impasse.

He called on the two sides to deepen their technical cooperation in a constructive and non-politicised manner, with the aim of finally settling remaining outstanding issues related to Syria’s initial declaration.

He looked forward to the upcoming meeting between the Foreign Minister and head of the National Authority of Syria and the OPCW Director-General — which should serve as a confidence-building measure - and called for the international community to lend its support to that engagement.

Izumi Nakamitsu, Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, briefed the 15-member Council on her Office’s recent engagement with its OPCW counterparts. 

Noting that their work remains subject to the evolving COVID-19 pandemic and conditions on the ground, she reported that the Syrian authorities requested talks with the organisation’s Declarations Assessment Team to be pushed back to October from the initially requested date in September.

UNSC members showed their concern over the accusation of the use of chemical weapons in Syria, underlining the need to strengthen cooperation between the Syrian Government and OPCW as well as members of the Chemical Weapon Convention to deal with issues related to chemical weapons in the country.