“Today the last munition was destroyed here. Thus, all stockpiles of chemical weapons at these facilities have been eliminated,” Col. Gen. Valery Kapashin, head of the Federation Agency for Safe Storage and Destruction of Chemical Weapons, told Interfax-AVN. A total of 5,500 tonnes of toxic agents within more than 1.9 million chemical artillery munitions have been destroyed at Shchuchye, he said. “Some of them were complex-structure munitions containing not only toxic but also explosive substances which could not be extracted,” the agency said in a press release.
The plant at Shchuchye is the fifth of the seven Russian arsenals to have destroyed all stockpiles of chemical weapons: Gorny (Saratov region), Kambarka (Udmurtia), Leonidovka (Penza Region) and Maradykovsky (Kirov Region). To date, Russia has destroyed around 91.4 percent of its stockpiles, Kapashin said.
“Very soon the destruction of chemical weapons will also be completed in the Bryansk region [the Pochep facility],” Kapashin said.
Subsequently, the Russian chemical disarmament program will continue at the Kizner facility in Udmurtia, the last one to have been commissioned (in December 2013). Currently Kizner has destroyed around 40 percent of its toxic agent stockpiles.
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