Statement by Ambassador Zhang Jun, Permanent Representative of China to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons at the 59th Session of the Executive Council
（The Hague, 23 February 2010）
First of all, please allow me, on behalf of the Chinese delegation, to welcome you back to the chair of the Executive Council (EC). My delegation pledges its full cooperation to you and to other delegations, so as to help the session complete all its proceedings successfully.
I wish to thank the Director-General (DG), H. E. Mr. Pfirter, for his comprehensive report. I fully associate myself with the statement made by the Ambassador of Cuba, H. E. Mr. Oscar de los Reyes Ramos, on behalf of the NAM States Parties and China.
This EC session represents the start of business of this year in the OPCW. Being the organization’s day-to-day policy-making organ, the effective operation of the EC is essential not only to the successful performance by the Technical Secretariat and the Conference of States Parties of their tasks, but also to the full implementation of the Convention. The Chinese delegation hopes that the EC will enhance its overall work planning for the whole year, make its work in all aspects more effective and relevant, and in particular, encourage all parties to conduct thorough and focused discussions on such major issues as CW destruction and industry verification, and intensify its guidance for consultations in order to expand consensus, so that further substantive progress will yield soon.
Now, please allow me to elaborate on my delegation’s views on some agenda items.
Firstly, the timely and complete CW destruction constitutes a core object of the Convention and remains the OPCW’s task of top priority and utmost urgency. Thanks to efforts by the possessor states, considerable progress has been made in the destruction. However, now that the final deadline of 2012 draws ever nearer, a significant amount of the stockpiles is yet to be destroyed, which gives no cause for optimism for the timely completion of the destruction. The grave consequences possibly arising therefrom have already triggered widespread concerns. During relevant consultation chaired by the EC Chairman, participants all reaffirmed the urgency and significance for the possessor states to speed up their destruction processes. Some parties also proposed that we draw up a practical and feasible work program and schedule which will prepare us in legal, administrative and organizational aspects to respond duly to the possible eventuality of missing the destruction deadline. My delegation believes that the most pressing matter is for the possessor states to do their best in expediting their work and completing the destruction in time. Consultations concerned should be focused on the acceleration of the destruction and on providing necessary conditions, where possible, for its timely completion. My delegation urges the possessor states to heighten their sense of urgency and intensify their inputs, so that their destruction will be accomplished as soon as possible.
Secondly, the early and complete destruction of the chemical weapons abandoned by Japan in China (Japanese ACWs) represents one core object and priority task of the Convention, and hence a critical benchmark assessing the overall progress and quality of the implementation of the Convention. The Japanese ACWs have harmed China for over 60 years now. Even today, they continue to cause frequent human casualties and chronic environmental contamination. Their destruction, therefore, brooks no further delay. However, up to date, not a single item of the ACWs has been destroyed. This poses a grim challenge to the integrity and effectiveness of the implementation of the Convention. China is gravely concerned about it. The leaders of both China and Japan have reached the important consensus that the destruction operation in a mobile facility should be launched as soon as possible. Preparations for it are now in full swing in Nanjing. The Chinese side urges the Japanese side to do its utmost in speeding up its work and ensuring the scheduled initiation of the operation. At the same time, Japan should earnestly honour its obligations under the Convention and implement relevant EC decisions by drawing up a general plan of destruction and a timetable for it. It should also step up its inputs and launch the destruction as early as possible and complete it on time. My delegation attaches great importance to and will continue to support the Secretariat’s important role in this process.
Thirdly, the industry verification mechanism should be improved in strict compliance with relevant Convention provisions and in accordance with the common understandings reached. We should tackle both symptoms and causes on this issue and advance our work in a safe and sound manner. The frequency of inspections of different categories of industrial facilities, directing OCPF inspections towards facilities of greater relevance to the object and purpose of the Convention and the improvement of the selection methodology for OCPF inspection are all important issues pertaining to the improvement of the industry verification mechanism, and should thus be given equal attention and brought to coordinated solutions. In determining the distribution of verification resources, full account should be taken of geographical equity and the hierarchy of risks pertaining to different sorts of facilities, so as to avoid overly inspecting a small number of regions or states, ensure a reasonable distribution of resources and prevent their waste. My delegation has noted the Secretariat’s report on the two-year performance of the modified selection methodology for OCPF inspection, and calls on the EC to resume consultations to reach a fair, reasonable, balanced and effective solution at an early date. The Chinese side is prepared to involve itself constructively in the consultations and work towards bringing about progress in this regard.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.