Day 4 – Commitee of the Whole

Today the Commitee of the Whole begins. This is where the real business of the Review Conference will take place – too bad NGO observers are not allowed. The tentative programme of work says that the morning session will discuss:

“the role of the Chemical Weapons Convention in enhancing international peace and security and in achieving the objectives as set forth in the preamble of the Convention; ensuring the universality of the Chemical Weapons Convention; implementation of the provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention relating to general obligations and declarations related thereto.”

And the afternoon session will focus on:

“implementation of the provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention relating to destruction of chemical weapons and destruction or conversion of chemical weapons production facilities; verification activities of the OPCW; activities not prohibited under the Chemical Weapons Convention.”

The Open Forum

Here is a (not so brief) overview of the Open Forum held at OPCW headquarters yesterday.

Yesterday afternoon was the Open Forum, where other stakeholders in the CWC, such as industry, academia and NGOs were able to present their views and ideas on moving the Convention forward. The forum was chaired by Dr. Ralf Trapp and began with a brief welcome from Director General Rogelio Pfirter. The DG thanked us for coming and expressed his appreciation for the participation of industry, academia and NGOs in the RevCon. The OPCW, the states parties and the other stakeholders all need to work together for the CWC and continue to be “dedicated to peace and security and the improvement of the human condition.”
Next United Kingdom Ambassador Lyn Parker, Chair of the Open-Ended Working Group for the preparation for the Second Review Conference said a few words. He outlined the extensive preparations for the conference and is looking forward to the upcoming discussions between the states parties, but also attached importance input from us.
The first panel of the meeting focused on “creating a more secure world through the Chemical Weapons Convention” and Daniel Feakes of the Harvard Sussex Program was the first speaker. Continue reading