Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) – an international organization that has been working since 1997 to convince countries to give up chemical weapons besides checking and confirming the destruction of existing chemical weapons being awarded the Nobel peace prize 2013.
The Nobel prize, however, was not awarded specifically to recognize OPCW’s work in Syria, because that work has just began. In a post on Twitter, the Nobel committee said the prize is being given “because of its longstanding work” — the group’s historically successful drive to inspect and destroy all chemical weapons stockpiles.
During World War One, chemical weapons were used to a considerable degree. The Geneva Convention of 1925 prohibited the use, but not the production or storage, of chemical weapons. During World War Two, chemical means were employed in Hitler’s mass exterminations. Chemical weapons have subsequently been put to use on numerous occasions by both states and terrorists. In 1992-93 a convention was drawn up prohibiting also the production and storage of such weapons. It came into force in 1997. Since then the OPCW has, through inspections, destruction and by other means, sought the implementation of the convention. 189 states have acceded to the convention to date.
Prize motivation: “for its extensive efforts to eliminate chemical weapons”