LONDON – The head of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, which won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday, said the honor would provide a welcome boost to the group’s aim of ridding the world of chemical arms.
Ahmet Uzumcu, the OPCW’s director-general, also expressed hope that the award could help bring an end to the deadly civil war in Syria, where his organization’s inspectors are trying to destroy the government’s arsenal of chemical weapons even as fighting rages.
“The recognition that the peace prize brings will spur us to untiring effort, even stronger commitment and greater dedication,” said Uzumcu, a former Turkish diplomat. “I truly hope that this award and the OPCW’s ongoing mission together with the United Nations in Syria will help broader efforts to achieve peace in that country and end the suffering of its people.”
He said he had no idea that his organization was about to be awarded the prize when he spoke to the OPCW’s staff on the ground in Syria on Friday morning.