On 4 February, 2021 Russia’s permanent representative to the United Nations in New York, Vasily Nebenzya affirmed that Syria fulfills all its obligations towards the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and the UN Organization regarding the so-called “chemical file” despite the pressures and the accusations against it.
Nebenzya stressed, during a Security Council session via video on “the situation in Syria”, that drafting any resolution that is biased against Syria in the April session of OPCW member-states poses a real threat, including undermining the authority of the Organization and the UN Security Council which is responsible for implementing Resolution No. 2118. He pointed out that the attempts to put pressure on Syria by the States Parties in the Organization could endanger its cooperation with this international authority.
Syria’s Permanent representative to the UN, Dr. Bashar al-Jaafari, reaffirmed, during the session, that Western countries continue to use the OPCW and the so-called “chemical file” as a weapon in the war imposed on Syria and a tool to put pressure and political blackmail to serve the agendas of these countries in Syria and the region.
Geng Shuang, China’s deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, affirmed that the investigations into the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria should “respect the facts and science.
“The OPCW’s probe into the alleged use of chemical weapons should be carried out strictly within the framework of the Chemical Weapons Convention and should adhere to the principles of independence, impartiality, objectivity and respect for facts and science,” Geng said during a UN Security Council session via video. “We hope that Security Council members will also reach consensus on these principles as they are the basis for in-depth discussions and mutual trust,” he added.
He noted that “during the Security Council’s deliberations in the past, some council members have shown little interest in the technical details of the alleged use of chemical weapons, the integrity or conclusiveness of the chain of evidence in the investigation reports. Instead, they were keen to discuss the means and measures of attribution, proceeding from the presumption of guilt, pretty impatient as it seems.”
Discussions in the Security Council must be based on scientific analysis, substantiated by facts, must not be rushed in the absence of hard evidence, he said.
Geng noted that Syria has repeatedly expressed its willingness to cooperate with the Technical Secretariat of the OPCW. He reiterated China’s firm opposition to the use of chemical weapons, stressing that OPCW’s monthly reports should contain new information and reflect the concerns expressed and questions raised by some council members.
Caption; Russian UN Representative Vasily Nebenzya