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  • Faithful to my Homeland, the Republic of Poland
  • PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF POLAND TO THE OPCW

  • Permanent Representative of the Republic of Poland to the OPCW

    Permanent Representative of the Republic of Poland to the OPCW is H.E. Ambassador Marcin CZEPELAK, currently also representative of Poland to the OPCW Executive Council.

     

    Member of the Polish Delegation to the OPCW is Mr. Marcin KAWAŁOWSKI, Counsellor at the Embassy of the Republic of Poland to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, who acts as Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of Poland to the OPCW

    Historical overview

     

    The Organization for Prohibition of Chemical Weapons was created on 29 April 1997, the day the Convention on the prohibition of the development, production, stockpiling and use of chemical weapons and on their destruction (Chemical Weapons Convention, CWC) entered into force. The Convention was open for signature on 13 January 1993 in Paris.

     

    In the context of the 20th anniversary there was an official commemoration ceremony organized in The Hague in April this year with participation of the OPCW Director General as well as the King of the Netherlands (see.: https://20years.opcw.org/).

     

    Currently, 192 countries are parties to the CWC and members of the OPCW. Nevertheless, still one signatory state (Israel) and three, who have yet not decided to sign the Convention (Egypt, North Korea, South Sudan), remain outside the jurisdiction of the CWC.

     

    CWC Convention is the first public international law instrument in the history, that institutes  complete elimination of one of the three categories of weapons of mass destruction.

     

    Key areas of the OPCW efforts are: (1) permanent monitoring of processes of elimination and destruction of chemical weapons stockpiles as well as chemical weapons production facilities, (2) monitoring and verification of industry activities related to chemicals listed in the CWC annexes, primarily through States Parties declarations and inspections, (3) support for peaceful use of chemistry, in particular in developing countries.

     

    In 2013 the OPCW was awarded with the Nobel Prize for Peace for its extensive efforts to eliminate chemical weapons.

     

    Poland in OPCW

     

    Poland was among the very first countries that signed the Convention on 13 January 1993 and became a member to the OPCW since the establishment of the Organization on 29 April 1997. In 2001, Poland adopted the Act on implementation of the Convention (Minister of Foreign Affairs is the National Authority).

     

    All required declarations (initial declarations as well as annual industrial declarations regarding the planned production and the production from the previous year, the annual declarations on national programs for protection against chemical weapons in accordance with Art. X CWC) have always been filled on time. Moreover, Poland fulfilled its obligation in relation to the transfer of aid and assistance under Article X (contribution to the fund of 50 thousand guilders, more than 20 thousand euro). Poland contributes also to special trust funds for specific OPCW projects i.a. 100.000 euro for the elimination of the Syrian chemical weapons. On 6 November 2009, a bilateral agreement between Poland and the OPCW on privileges and immunities of the Organization entered into force (signed in the Hague in August 2008, ratified in September 2009). Industrial inspections of the OPCW are regularly received by Poland.

     

    For those twenty years Poland, as the only State Party, presided over all political bodies of the Organization, namely in the Executive Council (from May 1998 to May 1999), the Conference of the State Parties (from November 2004 to November 2005) and the Third Review Conference of the Convention (from 8 to 19 April 2013).

     

    Today, Poland is a member of the OPCW Executive Council for the sixth time (since 12 May 2016 till 11May 2018)

     

    Polish representatives are present as well in the subsidiary and advisory bodies to the OPCW such as the Scientific Advisory Board and Advisory Board on Education and Outreach. Within the framework of the OPCW, Poland was also involved in coordinating the implementation of Article X of the Convention (“facilitation”), which is dedicated to the assistance and protection in the event of possible use of chemical weapons.

     

    Poland plays the specific role in the promotion of the Convention since it is the sole sponsor (author) that annually introduces at the First Committee of the UN General Assembly a draft resolution on the implementation of the CWC.

     

    Until now, the Director-General of the OPCW paid visits to Poland three times (in December 2009 by then Director-General Regelio Pfirter as well as in November 2010 and November 2016 by the current Director-General of the OPCW Ahmet Üzümcü.

     

    Polish activity in the OPCW is not simply an issue of political contacts Poland remains an active contributor to and participant in various courses and training, co-organized and/or financed by the OPCW. An excellent cooperation is being developed i.a. by Institute for Organic Chemical Industry (IPO), State Fire Service Central High School in Częstochowa and Polish custom service. Polish chemical industry companies regularly are takin part in the flagship OPCW international Associate Programme.

     

    More:

    - OPCW http://www.opcw.org/

    - Chemical security in broader context of Poland’s disarmament and non-proliferation policy

    http://www.msz.gov.pl/pl/polityka_zagraniczna/polityka_bezpieczenstwa/

     

     

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