Most Syria chemical arms to be destroyed abroad: Russia
MOSCOW - Agence France-Presse
In this photo provided Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013, by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, samples brought back by the U.N. chemical weapons inspection team are checked in upon arrival at The Hague, Netherlands. AP PhotoRussia said on Friday that most of Syria's chemical weapons may be taken out of the country for destruction because of the violence raging between rebels and President Bashar al-Assad's regime.
"Much speaks in favour of the idea of moving the predominant majority of the toxic agents that exist in Syria out of this country," the RIA Novosti news agency quoted Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov as saying.
Ryabkov spoke after being briefed by Sigrid Kaag -- the Dutch diplomat heading the risky international mission to eradicate Syria's chemical weapons -- on her team's progress under a disarmament plan devised jointly by Moscow and Washington in September.
The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons reported on Thursday that Syria's entire declared stock of chemical weapons has been placed under seal.
But how nations go about actually destroying the weapons by the mid-2014 deadline has been a point of debate.
The Chemical Weapons Convention bars countries from transporting their stockpiles to other nations.
But under United Nations resolution 2118 adopted last month by the Security Council, member states were authorised to help transport the weapons stockpiles so they could be destroyed in "the soonest and safest manner".
US Secretary of State John Kerry has previously said that some of Syria's declared stock of more than 1,000 tonnes of toxic agents may be destroyed abroad.