President Barack Obama offered his congratulations to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for what the Norwegian Nobel Committee called “its extensive efforts to eliminate chemical weapons.”
A statement issued by the White House on October 11, noted that “the award reinforces the international community’s commitment to the international prohibition against the use of chemical weapons. One of the President’s highest priorities is to prevent the proliferation or use of weapons of mass destruction, and this award honors those who make it their life’s work to advance this vital goal.”
“The world will never forget the loss of the more than 1,000 innocent Syrians senselessly killed with chemical weapons on Aug. 21."
“Since its establishment 16 years ago, the OPCW has stood at the forefront of the international community’s efforts to verifiably eliminate some of the world’s most dangerous weapons,” the White House said. The Nobel award, “recognizes that commitment, and reinforces the trust and confidence the world has placed in the OPCW, Director-General Ahmed Uzumcu, and the courageous OPCW experts and inspectors taking on the unprecedented challenge of eliminating Syria’s chemical weapons program.”
Secretary of State John Kerry offered his congratulations to the OPCW for the prize and for the Organization’s life-saving work. “The world will never forget the loss of the more than 1,000 innocent Syrians senselessly killed with chemical weapons on Aug. 21,” he said.
“There could be no more stark reminder why for almost 100 years, the international community has deemed the use of these weapons far beyond the bounds of acceptable conduct.”
“Since that horrific attack, the OPCW has taken extraordinary steps and worked with unprecedented speed to address this blatant violation of international norms that shocked the conscience of people around the world,” said Secretary Kerry.
The White House statement emphasized that “the United States strongly supports the OPCW, including its joint work with the United Nations, to ensure that Syria’s chemical weapons stockpiles are placed under international control and ultimately destroyed.
Today, we again call on all nations to work to bring to an end the conflict that has cost the lives of more than 100,000 Syrians, and to support the OPCW’s efforts in the hope that future generations can live in a world free from the horrors of chemical weapons.”