Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

Erdogan to rid Turkish institutions of ‘separatist cancer’ after coup attempt

Read more

ENCORE!

The best of summer music festivals in France

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Going for gold: French athletes train for Rio Olympics

Read more

#TECH 24

Digital beauty

Read more

FOCUS

Women doctors in Pakistan challenge the status quo

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Trump hopes to reset America's trade relations

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Donald Trump's speech was just another scam'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Cazeneuve at the heart of Nice security controversy

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

South Africa: Prosecutors seek longer sentence for Oscar Pistorius

Read more

Middle east

UN begins destroying Syrian chemical weapons

© AFP

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2013-10-06

The United Nations' chemical team began destroying the Syrian chemical weapons, machinery and production facilities on Sunday, its officials say. Methods could include the use of explosives, sledgehammers or pouring in concrete, they added.

A team of disarmament inspectors began the process of destroying Syria's chemical weapons and production facilities on Sunday, a source in the international mission told AFP.

The source said members of the team from the UN and The Hague-based Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) "have left for a site where they are beginning verification and destruction."

"Today is the first day of destruction, in which heavy vehicles are going to run over and thus destroy missile warheads, aerial chemical bombs and mobile and static mixing and filling units," the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, added.

An OPCW official in The Hague said earlier this week that all "expedient methods" would be used to render Syria's production facilities unusable.

He said the methods could include the use of explosives, sledgehammers, or pouring in concrete.

The team of inspectors arrived in Damascus on Tuesday to begin the process of verifying details of the programme that were handed over by the Syrian government.

"Phase one which is disclosure by the Syrians is ending and we are now moving towards phase two, verification and destruction and disabling," the mission source said.

The team is in Syria under the terms of a UN resolution that enshrined a US-Russian agreement for President Bashar al-Assad's regime to turn over its chemical weapons for destruction.

The deal was hammered out in the wake of an August 21 sarin attack on the outskirts of Damascus, which the United States blamed on Assad's government -- a charge it denies.

Washington threatened military action in response to the chemical attack, but a strike was averted after the US-Russia deal was agreed.

Under the UN resolution on the agreement, Syria's chemical weapons arsenal is to be destroyed by mid-2014.

(AFP)

Date created : 2013-10-06

  • SYRIA

    UN chemical weapons team arrives in Syria

    Read more

  • SYRIA

    UN team wraps up inquiry into Syrian chemical attack

    Read more

  • UNITED NATIONS

    UN adopts resolution on Syria chemical weapons

    Read more

COMMENT(S)