Nobel Peace Prize rewards chemical watchdog's perseverance
THE HAGUE (AFP) - The winner of this year's Nobel Peace Prize is a body that has spent years trying to rid the world of chemical weapons in relative obscurity and was recently thrust into the limelight by the Syrian crisis.
From Russia to the United States, Iraq and Libya, inspectors from the Hague-based Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) have been slowly but surely destroying the world's most dangerous chemical stockpiles.
Syria last month signed up to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), which the OPCW enforces, agreeing to hand over its chemical weapons for destruction under a Russia-US plan aimed as averting military strikes on the country in the wake of a devastating chemical attack on a Damascus suburb.
President Bashar al-Assad's regime is accused of using the arms in an August 21 attack that killed hundreds of people on the outskirts of Damascus, and has denied the charge.