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UN Chief commends Special Coordinator and her team on successful completion of OPCW-UN Joint Mission

1 October 2014- Following the closure of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission on 30 September 2014, the Secretary-General expressed his deep gratitude to the Special Coordinator, Ms. Sigrid Kaag, as well as all the staff members from both the UN and the OPCW, who worked under difficult and often dangerous conditions to complete the elimination of the declared chemical weapons programme of the Syrian Arab Republic.

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OPCW-UN Joint Mission draws to a close

1 October 2014- The OPCW-UN Joint Mission on the elimination of Syrian chemical weapons has completed its mandate and its operations drew to a close on 30 September 2014.  The Director-General praised the role played by the Joint Mission.

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Ninety-six percent of Syria’s declared chemical weapons destroyed – UN-OPCW mission chief

4 September 2014 – The Special Coordinator for the Joint Mission of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the United Nations (OPCW-UN) told the Security Council today that 96 percent of Syria’s declared stockpile, including the most dangerous chemicals, had been destroyed and preparation were underway to destroy the remaining 12 production facilities.

 
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UN chief welcomes destruction of Syrian chemical weapons aboard U.S. vessel

New York, 20 August 2014 – Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on the destruction of Syria’s declared chemical weapons on board the United States Maritime Vessel Cape Ray:

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OPCW-UN Special Coordinator meets with United States delegation

Nicosia, 11 July 2014 – Ms. Sigrid Kaag, the Special Coordinator for the OPCW-UN Joint Mission met today with a delegation of U.S. officials to discuss progress made with regard to the completion of removal and in-country destruction of Syria's chemical weapons material.

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OPCW-UN Special Coordinator visits Tehran

25 June 2014 -- Ms. Sigrid Kaag, the Special Coordinator for the OPCW-UN Joint Mission concluded today a brief visit to the Islamic Republic of Iran.

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UN Secretary-General welcomes completion of removal of chemical weapons

23 June 2014 – Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on Syria: completion of removal of chemical weapons material

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100% of declared chemical weapons materials destroyed or removed from Syria

23 June 2014 – The Joint Mission welcomes the removal of the remaining 7.2 per cent of chemical weapons material from the Syrian Arab Republic. With this last movement, the total of declared chemical weapons materials destroyed or removed from Syria has reached 100%. The most operationally challenging task within the effort to eliminate the Syrian chemical weapons programme, has come to an end.

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As Syria deadline nears, OPCW-UN mission focuses on swift removal of remaining chemicals

4 June 2014 – Given that the 30 June 2014 deadline for the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons programme will not be met, the focus now is on the immediate removal of the remaining materials, the head of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission said today.

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Entire declared Syrian stockpile of Isopropanol is destroyed

20 May 2014 - The OPCW-UN Joint Mission confirms the destruction of the entire declared Syrian stockpile of Isopropanol.

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Head of OPCW-UN mission urges ‘final push’ to complete chemical weapons removal

8 May 2014 – The head of the Joint Mission of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the United Nations (OPCW-UN) today called for safe and unfettered access to the remaining eight per cent of Syria’s chemical weapons material that needs to be removed and destroyed.

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Press briefing by the OPCW-UN Joint Mission

27 April 2014 – The following are the key points made by Sigrid Kaag, Special Coordinator of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission, at a press briefing in Damascus, Syrian Arab Republic [English/Arabic]:

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92.5% of Syria’s chemical weapons material removed or destroyed in-country

24 April 2014 - The OPCW-UN Joint Mission confirms delivery of a further shipment of chemical weapons material. Today’s operation brings the total of chemical material removed and destroyed in country to 92.5%.

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OPCW-UN Joint Mission reports further progress

22 April 2014 - The OPCW-UN Joint Mission reported today that 88.0 percent of the overall Syria's chemical weapons materials have been removed from or destroyed in-country.

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Statement by Sigrid Kaag, Special Coordinator of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission

19 April 2014 - With today's movement, the Syrian Arab Republic has removed or destroyed in-country approximately 80 percent of its chemical weapons material. 

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72.3% of Syria's chemical materials are removed from or destroyed in country

16 April 2014
- The OPCW-UN Joint Mission confirms that the 15th shipment of chemical material left the port of Latakia today. The overall percentage of chemicals removed from the Syrian Arab Republic or destroyed in the country has now reached 72.3%.  

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WHO and OPCW-UN Joint Mission reinforce public health capacities to respond to chemical incidents
 

13 April 2014 - The OPCW-UN Joint Mission and the World Health Organization (WHO) have been working to strengthen public health capacities within Syrian Arab Republic to respond to risks of chemical exposure.

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OPCW-UN Joint Mission Special Coordinator visits Cairo

8 April 2014 - Ms. Sigrid Kaag, the Special Coordinator of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission concluded a brief mission to Cairo. 

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Statement Attributable to the OPCW-UN Joint Mission Special Coordinator Sigrid Kaag


20 March 2014 - As of today 53.6% of the Syrian Arab Republic's chemical weapons material has been removed from or destroyed in the Syrian Arab Republic.

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OPCW-UN mission chief welcomes recent progress on chemical removal from Syria


5 March 2014 – A recent acceleration of efforts by Syria and the submission of a revised timeline for removing toxic agents bode well for meeting the 30 June 2014 deadline for destroying the country’s chemical weapons programme, the official charged with overseeing the venture said today after briefing the United Nations Security Council on progress to date.

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Syria submits revised proposal to OPCW for removal of chemicals


4 March 2014 - The Syrian Arab Republic has submitted to the OPCW a revised proposal that aims to complete the removal of all chemicals from Syria before the end of April 2014. 

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OPCW-UN Mission confirms removal of sulphur mustard stockpile from Syria

26 February 2014 - Statement of the Special Coordinator of the Joint Mission Ms. Sigrid Kaag

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OPCW awards contracts to two companies for destruction of Syrian chemicals and Effluents


14 February 2014 - Following a rigorous tendering process, the OPCW Director-General, Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, announced today that the OPCW has awarded contracts to the following two companies with respect to the Call for Proposals for Transport, Treatment and Disposal of Hazardous and Non-Hazardous Organic and Inorganic Chemicals, Effluents and Related Materials (Reference: CFP# CDB-P14-002):

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Special Coordinator visits UK and Russian vessels


13 February 2014 - Ms. Sigrid Kaag, the Special Coordinator of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission visited the UK vessel ‘HMS Montrose’ on 13 February. She was briefed  by the Danish Commodore of the taskgroup, Commodore Torben Mikkelsen and  the UK Commander Captain James Perkins on the ongoing transport of chemicals out of the Syrian Arab Republic.

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Third shipment of chemical weapons leaves the Syrian port of Lattakia


10 February 2014 - A third shipment of chemical weapons material took place from the Syrian Arab Republic today. The material is on board a Norwegian cargo vessel accompanied by a naval escort from the People’s Republic of China, Denmark, Norway, and the Russian Federation. The United Kingdom is participating in the naval escort in international waters. Finland is providing experts onboard the Danish vessel. 

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UN calls for speeding up pace of lagging chemical weapons elimination

6 February 2014 – The United Nations today welcomed a long-sought accord to let in convoys with life-saving supplies for 500 Syrian families trapped by war in the Old City of Homs without any aid for two years, but voiced growing concern at the slow pace in ridding the country of chemical weapons, calling for swifter action.

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Director-General: Need to “Pick Up Pace” In Removing Chemicals from Syria
31 January 2014 - In a meeting of the OPCW Executive Council yesterday, Director-General Ahmet Üzümcü briefed the Council on efforts underway to expedite the process of removing Syrian chemicals that have been identified for destruction outside Syrian territory. 
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Special Coordinator of the OPCW- UN Joint Mission holds consultations in Doha
27 January 2014 - Special Coordinator for the OPCW-UN Joint Mission, Sigrid Kaag visited Doha on 27 January 2014. She met with the Qatari Minister for Foreign Affairs H.E. Dr. Khalid Bin Mohammed Al Attiyah.
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Joint Mission facilitates dialogue to discuss environmental issues
27 January 2014 - The OPCW-UN Joint Mission and the OPCW Technical Secretariat (TS) facilitated a dialogue on 16 January 2014 to discuss environmental issues related to the process of transportation of chemical materials from Syria for disposal outside its territory.  The meeting was attended by technical experts from the parties involved in the operation, the Joint Mission, OPCW TS, UNEP, and representatives of Greenpeace, Robin des Bois and the German NGO Forum for the Environment and Economy.
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Further removal of chemical weapons materials from the Syrian Arab Republic

27 January 2014 - Today, a further shipment of chemical weapons materials took place from the Syrian Arab Republic.  The chemical materials were verified by Joint Mission personnel before being loaded in Lattakia port onto Danish and Norwegian cargo vessels for onward transportation.

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OPCW receives tenders from 14 private firms to destroy Syrian commodity chemicals and effluents
20 January 2014 - A total of 14 private firms have submitted tenders to destroy 500 metric tonnes of Syria’s commodity chemicals, as well as effluent from the neutralisation of its Priority chemicals, at commercial facilities outside of the Syrian Arab Republic.
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Special Coordinator of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission holds consultations in Riyadh

16 January 2014 - Sigrid Kaag, the Special Coordinator for the OPCW-UN Joint Mission in Syria held consultations in Riyadh with the Government of Saudi Arabia, including His Highness Prince Turki bin Mohammed bin Saud Al-Kabeer, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Multilateral Affairs.

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Trans-loading of Syrian chemicals to be undertaken at port of Gioia Tauro in Italy
16 January 2014 - The OPCW Director-General, Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, confirmed today that the Italian Government has agreed to allow the port of Gioia Tauro for priority chemicals brought from Syria by cargo vessels to be trans-loaded onto a U.S. ship, the MV Cape Ray. The port is located on the Mediterranean coast of southern Italy and is specialised in transhipment activities.
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Statement by the OPCW Director-General on the 30 June deadline

16 January 2014 - "The OPCW Director-General, Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, confirmed at a press briefing in Rome today that he remains confident the deadline of 30 June 2014 for destroying Syria’s entire arsenal of chemical weapons can be met".

We will finish the job of eliminating Syria’s chemical weapons materials and programmes, Ban says

10 January 2014 - Speaking at his fist press conference this year, the United Nations Secretary-General touched upon issues relating to work of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission. 

Excerpts from the press conference >>

Germany to Destroy Effluent from Syrian Chemicals

9 January 2014 - The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany has confirmed to the OPCW that it will dispose of 370 metric tonnes of effluent to be generated by the hydrolysis of Syria’s stock of mustard gas aboard the U.S. vessel MV Cape Ray.

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Security Council expects Syria to meet June deadline for chemical weapons removal, official says

8 January 2014 - Despite a delay in eliminating Syria’s chemical weapons material, the United Nations Security Council expects that there will be no delay beyond the end-of-June deadline for the total removal of all such materials, the head of the group charged with the effort said after briefing the 15-member body today.

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Special Coordinator on the first removal of chemical weapons material from Syria

7 January 2013 - The Joint Mission confirms that further progress has been made towards the removal and elimination of the Syrian Arab Republic’s chemical weapons programme. A first quantity of priority chemical materials was moved from two sites to the port of Lattakia for verification and was then loaded onto a Danish commercial vessel today.

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First priority chemicals in Syria transported to Latakia and removed from the country

7 January 2013 - The removal of the first consignment of priority chemicals from the Syrian Arab Republic took place today. The chemicals were transported from two sites and loaded onto a Danish vessel which left the port of Lattakia. The operation was assisted and verified by the OPCW-UN Joint Mission in Syria.

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Statement attributable to the Spokesperson of the Secretary-General on the work of the Joint Mission

7 January 2013 - The Joint Mission of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and the United Nations has informed the Secretary-General that further progress has been made towards the removal and eliminations of Syrian chemical weapons programme. A first quantity of priority chemical materials was moved from two sites to the port of Latakia for verification and was then loaded onto a Danish cargo ship today.

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Statement from the OPCW-UN Joint Mission

28 December 2013 - The Joint Mission of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the United Nations for the Elimination of Chemical Weapons Programme of the Syrian Arab Republic [OPCW-UN Joint Mission] continues to verify the elimination of the chemical weapons programme of the Syrian Arab Republic while advancing preparations and activities related to the removal of precursor, binary and end-state chemical weapon material from the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic.
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Statement by the OPCW Director-General
28 December 2013 - The Director-General has welcomed the further steps by the international community demonstrating that it is poised and ready to assist with the removal of chemicals from the Syrian Arab Republic for disposal outside its territory. States Parties providing maritime support for this operation met in Moscow on 27 December and agreed on the modalities for coordination of the transport and escort vessels in Syrian territorial waters and at the port. The Executive Council is scheduled to meet next on 8 January 2014 to review progress.
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Statement Attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General on the OPCW-UN Joint Mission

28 December 2013 - The Special Coordinator of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission announced today that, due to technical difficulties, there will be a limited delay in the transport of the first tranche of chemical agents from the Syrian Arab Republic. These were anticipated to be removed by 31 December.

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Special Coordinator expresses gratitude to the Government of Cyprus

27 December 2013 - The Special Coordinator of the OPCW-UN Joint Mission, Ms. Sigrid A. Kaag met today with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cyprus, Mr. Ioannis Kasoulides and expressed her gratitude for the support that the Government of the Republic of Cyprus continues to provide to the Joint Mission.

EU Support to the OPCW Special Trust Fund for the Destruction of Syrian Chemical Weapons

20 December 2013 - The Director-General of the OPCW has welcomed the announcement by Ms. Catherine Ashton of a contribution of 12 million Euros to the OPCW Special Trust Fund.

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Multinational effort to remove chemical arms kicks off tomorrow, OPCW says

18 December 2013 – The search for suitable vendors to assist in the commercial transport and destruction of Syrian chemical agents is due to begin tomorrow, the head of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) said today, announcing a multinational effort for that will require additional funding.

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OPCW Executive Council receives destruction plan for Syrian chemical weapons

18 December 2013 - As requested by the OPCW Executive Council, Director-General Ahmet Üzümcü yesterday submitted to the Council a plan for destroying the Syrian Arab Republic’s chemical weapons outside of the country.  The plan aims to meet a deadline set by the Council to destroy Syria’s priority chemicals by 31 March 2014 and other mostly commodity chemicals by 30 June 2014.

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UN Secretary-General speaks at the Security Council on the investigative team's Final Report
16 December 2013 – [remarks as prepared for delivery - PDF] You will have seen or heard my briefing to the General Assembly on the report of the United Nations Mission to Investigate Allegations of the Use of Chemical Weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic.  And of course, the full and final factual report is in your hands.
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OPCW Director-General visits Sweden, meets Prime Minister

14 December 2013 - During a two-day visit to Sweden that concluded today, Director-General Ahmet Üzümcü had separate meetings with the Prime Minister, Mr. Fredrik Reinfeldt, and with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Carl Bildt.

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Press conference on UN mission to investigate alleged chemical weapons use in Syria*

13 December 2013 - On a scale of 1 to 10, the fact-finding mission in Syria had achieved 8.7, the chief of the mission charged with verifying the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria said at a Headquarters press conference today. [webcast]

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