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Task force gathers for Syria chemical weapons pickup

Published on Dec 15, 2013 12:14 AM
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LIMASSOL, Cyprus (REUTERS) - A Danish-led task force was being readied in Cyprus on Saturday to remove the first part of Syria's deadly chemical stockpile, due before the end of this year.

Under a deal worked out between the United States and Russia, Syria will relinquish control of deadly toxins which can be used to make sarin, VX gas and other lethal agents.

Denmark and Norway plan to use two cargo vessels to transport the cargo out of the Syrian port city of Latakia, escorted by two frigates of their respective navies, and deliver it to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) for destruction.

The deadliest chemicals in Syria's stockpile are due to be shipped out of the country by the end of the year under an agreement between Damascus and the OPCW, but the ongoing conflict is complicating efforts to meet that deadline.

 
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