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Japan Urged to Destroy Abandoned Chemical Weapons in China

A Chinese official in charge of the prohibition of chemical weapons Monday urged the Japanese government to take measures to destroy totally its abandoned chemical weapons in China as soon as possible.

Gu Juesheng, deputy director of China's special office for the implementation of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction (CWC), made the call at a symposium on the CWC's implementation, which opened inBeijing Monday.

He also explained the Chinese government's consistent position on chemical weapon disarmament.

The five-day symposium, co-sponsored by the Chinese government and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), focuses on the actual implementation of the CWC. More than 80 participants from more than 20 countries are expected to exchange views for promoting an overall and effective implementation.

Addressing Monday's opening ceremony, Deputy Director-General of the OPCW John Gee spoke highly of China's efforts in implementing the convention and expressed satisfaction with the whole implementing work within the world since it took effect in 1997.

According to him, among the 135 contracting countries and the 37 signing countries, most have made obligatory announcements.

The OPCW has so far completed 800 inspections on related facilities of over 40 countries. All countries that own chemical weapons have started destroying their stockpile and related facilities, Gee said.

He also called on more countries to join the convention.

(Xinhua 09/4/2000)

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