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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 13 December 2018

Britain calls for meeting to strengthen resolve against chemical weapons

UK foreign secretary Boris Johnson spoke in Paris on Friday

A child receives oxygen through a respirator following an alleged poison gas attack in the rebel-held town of Douma, near Damascus, Syria in April 2018. Syrian Civil Defence White Helmets via AP
A child receives oxygen through a respirator following an alleged poison gas attack in the rebel-held town of Douma, near Damascus, Syria in April 2018. Syrian Civil Defence White Helmets via AP

British foreign minister Boris Johnson called on parties to the international Chemical Weapons Convention to meet in June and agree ways to strengthen the agreement in the face of recent uses of banned weapons.

“We join our partners today in calling for a special session of Conference of States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention in June to agree action to support the Convention and its implementing body, the OPCW (Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons)," Mr Johnson said in a statement.

"Together, we will ensure that the global ban on chemical weapons and their use is upheld and enforced."

Speaking ahead of the meeting, Mr Johnson cited examples of where chemical weapons had been used this year.

“We have to confront the reality that chemical weapons have been used numerous times in recent years, in defiance of the 1997 Chemical Weapons Convention," he said. "Assad’s brutality in Syria, and the attempted murders in Salisbury pose a grave threat to the Chemical Weapons Convention and to the rules based order that keeps us all safe."

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