On 7-10 July, the Permanent Representative of Lithuania to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ambassador Vidmantas Purlys attends the 94th session of the Executive Council of the OPCW in The Hague. The most important item on the Council’s agenda – the first report of 8 April by the OPCW Investigation and Identification Team (IIT), which concluded that units of the Syrian Arab Air Force had used chemical weapons in Syria in March 2017.
The Ambassador emphasized Lithuania’s support for the investigation of the use of chemical weapons in Syria and its findings. V. Purlys recalled that Lithuania strongly condemned any use of chemical weapons and, therefore, believed that those responsible for the use of chemical weapons must be held accountable.
The Ambassador V. Purlys also drew the Council‘s attention to the problem of chemical weapons dumped at sea, which required consistent cooperation among international organizations, governments, science, industry, and non-governmental organizations. He also underlined that the OPCW had the necessary expertise and technological infrastructure to ensure such cooperation.
On 12 May 2020, Lithuania was elected for the first time ever as a member state to the Executive Council for the 2020-2022 period.
The OPCW, with its 193 member states, was established in 1997. The organization oversees the global endeavor to eliminate chemical weapons.