Main content

Chemical Weapons: 100 Years On

With the end of April being the deadline for Syria to sacrifice its entire arsenal of chemical weapons, Tom Heap finds out the nitty-gritty of how they are going to be disposed of.

With the end of April being the deadline for Syria's President Assad to sacrifice his entire arsenal of chemical weapons, Tom Heap finds out the nitty-gritty of how they're going to be disposed of. This involves previously untried methods such as neutralising the most dangerous chemicals on board an American vessel, the MV Cape Ray. This, as we'll hear, presents its own problems. Other Syrian chemicals will be destroyed in Port Ellesmere in Cheshire, as well as in the United States, Germany and Finland.

Tom puts these efforts of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) into a historical perspective, exactly 99 years after the first recorded use of chemical weapons in Ypres during the First World War.

Producer: Mark Smalley.

Available now

30 minutes

Broadcasts

What has happened to the world's coral?

What has happened to the world's coral?

In 2016 reefs around the world the size of city blocks died. Here we explore why.

Podcast