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China undergoes 130 inspections on weapons

world Updated: Apr 30, 2007 14:02 IST

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The Organisation for Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has conducted over 130 on-the-spot inspections on China, often accused of clandestinely exporting sensitive dual-use chemicals to countries like Iran.

This was stated by the vice minister of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), Zhang Guobao in Beijing on April 29 while marking the 10th anniversary of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction.

"China gave active cooperation and assistance to these inspections. The results show that China has strictly implemented the provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention," Zhang said in a statement.

"The Chinese government has punctually submitted original and annual reports to the OPCW. By March this year, China, whose chemical industrial facilities account for one-third of the world's total, had witnessed more than 130 on-the-spot examinations by OPCW inspectors. The results of the inspections show that China is strictly implementing the provisions of the convention," Zhang says.

"China is resolute in opposing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems. It attaches great importance to the role of the convention in preventing the proliferation of chemical weapons and their raw materials", he said.

"In recent years China has continuously strengthened its anti-proliferation capacity and strictly censored its chemical imports and exports according to the law", he said.

However, in the past, the US has imposed sanctions on Chinese companies for allegedly supplying dual-use chemicals to Iran. Beijing dismissed the charge, saying it has tightened regulations concerning chemicals and is opposed to the spread of weapons of mass destruction (WMD).