RFA Mounts Bay will help ensure chemical weapons precursors do not fall into the hands of extremist groups, including Daesh. This contribution underlines our support to the Libyan Government of National Accord.

Defence Secretary Michael Fallon

Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said: "RFA Mounts Bay will help ensure chemical weapons precursors do not fall into the hands of extremist groups, including Daesh. This contribution underlines our support to the Libyan Government of National Accord."

The deployment of RFA Mounts Bay is the latest demonstration of the UK’s support for the programme to remove materials which could be used in the manufacture of chemical weapons from Libya.

In July this year during his first visit to the UN since taking up the role the Foreign Secretary voted personally to adopt a UK drafted UN Security Council Resolution supporting the Libyan Government’s operation.

In addition the UK conducted intensive diplomatic negotiations including in New York and The Hague to support the Resolution and the wider operation.

The UK also contributed around £500K to the overall destruction effort, and conducted expert analysis of samples of the Libyan chemicals at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, (Porton Down).

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said: "The UK, in close cooperation with our international partners, is taking practical and effective action to eliminate chemical weapon risks in Libya."

The chemicals will be taken to a specialised facility, where they will be destroyed in an environmentally safe and secure way.

Separately, samples of the chemicals have been flown to the UK for analysis by the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) at Porton Down – the MOD’s science arm.

As an OPCW Designated Laboratory DSTL has a capability that is respected worldwide for the quality of its work in the defence and security field.

The UK has experience of working with the Danes when dealing with chemical weapons – both countries played a key role in the removal of Syria’s chemical weapons in 2013 and 2014.

The UK worked closely with a range of international partners in dealing with these chemicals from Libya, including the USA and Germany as well as the OPCW.

Systems Engineer Officer (RFA)

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