Chemical watchdog group hopes Nobel prize will help bring peace to Syria

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Associated Press

Posted on October 11, 2013 at 1:05 PM

Updated Friday, Oct 11 at 1:07 PM

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The head of a chemical weapons watchdog group says he hopes the decision to give the group the Nobel Peace Prize will help efforts to achieve peace in Syria.

The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons is the group that is at work in Syria, trying to destroy that country's stockpiles of nerve gas and other poisonous agents.

The group's director-general, Ahmet Uzumcu (AHK'-met ooh-ZOOM'-joo) says, "Events in Syria have been a tragic reminder that there remains much work still to be done."

He says the $1.2 million in prize money will be used to pursue the goals of the group, the elimination of chemical weapons.

The reaction in Syria to the award is polarized. A senior Syrian rebel called the award a "premature step." A lawmaker from Syria's ruling party declared the Nobel to be a vindication of President Bashar Assad's government.

%@AP Links

139-a-18-(Ahmet Uzumcu (AHK'-meht ooh-ZOOM'-joo), director-general of OPCW, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, at news conference)-"very challenging environment"-Ahmet Uzumcu, head of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, says the group's workers in the field deserve great credit for their efforts. ((note cut length)) (11 Oct 2013)

<<CUT *139 (10/11/13)££ 00:18 "very challenging environment"

140-a-14-(Ahmet Uzumcu (AHK'-meht ooh-ZOOM'-joo), director-general of OPCW, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, at news conference)-"nearly universal convention"-Ahmet Uzumcu, head of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, hopes this prize will encourage the nations that remain outside the Chemical Weapons Convention to join soon. (11 Oct 2013)

<<CUT *140 (10/11/13)££ 00:14 "nearly universal convention"

141-a-14-(Ahmet Uzumcu (AHK'-meht ooh-ZOOM'-joo), director-general of OPCW, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, at news conference)-"now in Syria"-Ahmet Uzumcu, head of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, says the award offers encouragement to staff who work in some of the world's most dangerous regions. (11 Oct 2013)

<<CUT *141 (10/11/13)££ 00:14 "now in Syria"

GRAPHICSBANK: Ahmet Uzumcu headshot, as Director General of the world's chemical watchdog, OPCW, The Hague, graphic element on gray (11 Oct 2013)

APPHOTO PDJ120: Director General of the OPCW, Ahmet Uzumcu, comments on the organization being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, during a press conference in The Hague, Netherlands, Friday Oct. 11, 2013. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons has won this year's Nobel Peace Prize, it was announced on Friday. The Norwegian Nobel Committee honored the Hague, Netherlands-based global chemical watchdog "for its extensive efforts to eliminate chemical weapons." (AP Photo/Peter Dejong) (11 Oct 2013)

<<APPHOTO PDJ120 (10/11/13)££

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