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BMLVS: Brief an Chuck Hagel im Wortlaut

Bedingung für den Friedenseinsatz von österreichischen Chemiewaffenexperten ist ein UN-Mandat

Wien (OTS/BMLVS) - Das Bundesministerium für Landesverteidigung und Sport veröffentlicht den Brief von Bundesminister Gerald Klug an seinen Amtskollegen, den US-amerikanischen Verteidigungsminister, Chuck Hagel. Am vergangenen Freitag übersandte der österreichische Verteidigungsminister diesen Brief mit dem Hinweis, dass ein entsprechendes UN-Mandat und ein sicheres Umfeld Bedingung für den Friedenseinsatz von österreichischen Chemiewaffenexperten in Syrien sind.

Hier das Schreiben im Wortlaut:

In the light of the continuing Syrian crisis and the probable use of chemical weapons against the Syrian population I would like to address you personally and share some ideas concerning the possibility of a Syria free from chemical weapons.

Together with the international community Austria is extremely concerned about the latest tragic events in Syria and condemns the use of any kind of chemical weapons. The Austrian government advocates the complete destruction of all chemical weapons in Syria and calls for the establishment of a Middle East free from such weapons. The complete and sustainable abolishment of these weapons of mass destruction has to be an essential element of any credible political conflict resolution.

The Austrian Security Strategy clearly addresses the "prevention of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction" as well as an "active Austrian contribution to international arms control and disarmament" as essential strategic political objectives. The NBC units of the Austrian Armed Forces have both the expertise and sophisticated equipment to contribute to an international mission covering the destruction of chemical weapons in Syria. For instance, from 1991 to 1999 in total 66 experts of the Austrian Armed Forces destroyed around 690 tons of blister and nerve agent belonging to Saddam Hussein's regime.

Therefore Austria - in implementation of its own security strategy and in accordance with humanitarian and security policy objectives of the EU and UN - is willing to contribute actively to such an international effort, if following prerequisites are fulfilled:

1. United Nations mandate

2. Consolidation of the regional security situation and

3. Guarantee of the necessary military framework and logistic preconditions.

Under these conditions the international community may count on the Austrian Armed Forces to participate in an international mission to facilitate the destruction of chemical weapons in Syria with a team of military experts.

Mr. Secretary, your personal opinion and the official view of the United States of America on the possible Austrian contribution to an international dismantling of weapons of mass destruction in Syria is of essential importance to us. Austria is ready to explore such a crisis management effort with other like-minded countries in order to provide a sustainable effort to achieve as soon as possible. We have to ensure the desperately needed ending of the current deplorable devastating humanitarian situation in Syria.

Let me thank you for your most appreciated answer.

Rückfragen & Kontakt:

Bundesministerium für Landesverteidigung und Sport
Andreas Strobl
Kabinett des Bundesministers
Tel.: 050201-1020145


Bundesministerium für Landesverteidigung und Sport
Kommunikation / Presse
Tel.: +43 664-622-1005