Ki-moon Outlines Chemical Weapons Plan at U.N.

Ban Ki-moon, the Secretary General at the United Nations on Monday outlined the plan for establishing the mission for the handover and destruction of chemical weapons in Syria.

The plan will involve more than 100 administrators, technical specialists and security personnel to destroy the nerve agent program. This will mark the first time the U.N. has carried out a task of this nature during an ongoing civil war.

The team will also have political officers from the U.N. as well as all the technical and security personnel. The staging area will be in Cyprus, while only maintaining a slight footprint inside Syria, said Ban in a 10-page letter that was sent to the Security Council.

Its mission said Ban would be to destroy the chemical weapon program in Syria that includes over 1,000 metric tons of agents, precursors and chemical weapons. The U.N. hopes to have everything completed before June 30.

The plan by the U.N., which would require approval from its Security Council, has been designed to implement the agreement on chemical weapons that had been brokered by Russia and the United States and had the Council’s endorsement and that of the executive board of the OPCW.

An advance team consisting of 35 has been sent by the U.N. to Damascus to start the dismantling of the chemical weapons program. This team is using angle grinders and cutting torches to disable or destroy some of the aerial bombs, missile warheads and filling and mixing equipment said Ban.

However, the operation needs to be scaled up quickly over the coming weeks if the task is to be completed on schedule. Ban said in his letter that he was appointing a special coordinator or senior official to manage the operation of the mission.

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