The international body tasked with ensuring Syria’s chemical weapons are eliminated has enough money to fund its mission only until the end of this month, and needs more funds soon for the destruction of poison gas stocks next year.
An official at the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, which won the Nobel Peace Prize last month, expressed confidence that governments would find more money to ensure the process does not lose momentum.
Discussions are underway with countries willing to host facilities for incinerating or chemically neutralizing the poisons, including Albania, Belgium and an unspecified Scandinavian country, two sources familiar with the discussions said.
Companies in the United States, Germany and France are competing for the contract to provide destruction facilities, the sources said.
Since being established under the 1997 Chemical Weapons Convention, the OPCW has overseen the destruction of more than 50,000 tonnes of toxic munitions, or more than 80 percent of the world’s declared stockpile. The United States and Russia, the largest possessors of chemical weapons, are years behind schedule in destroying their arsenals.