Sudan: Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 3rd April 2017.

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Photo of Lord Alton of Liverpool Lord Alton of Liverpool Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they supported the appointment of a representative of the government of Sudan as Vice Chairman of the Organization for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons; and, in making this appointment, what account was taken of the allegations by Amnesty International that chemical weapons have been used against the civilian population of Sudan, and of the decision of the International Criminal Court to indict the President of Sudan on charges of genocide.

Photo of Baroness Anelay of St Johns Baroness Anelay of St Johns Minister of State, Deputy Speaker (Lords)

Regional groupings of the States Parties to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) designate candidates for the Chairmanship and four Vice-Chair positions, which are traditionally adopted by consensus within the Executive Council in accordance with established OPCW rules and practice. On this occasion, Sudan was the Africa Group’s chosen representative. Given that we understand that more information would be required for the OPCW to investigate further the allegations against Sudan and that the role of Vice-Chair does not have authority over any action by the OPCW to look into allegations of use, we did not object to the Africa Group’s nominee. This is a separate issue to the International Criminal Court (ICC) indictment of President Bashir. The UK remains a strong supporter of the ICC and we continue to make clear that we expect compliance with the arrest warrants for all those indicted.

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