Rep. Wayne Owens, D-Utah, has been named to a four-member congressional observer group to the chemical weapons negotiations under way in Geneva, officials said Friday.

The observation team, requested by Owens and approved Thursday, is to serve as a bipartisan task force monitoring progress in the talks and advising Congress on developments.Owens said the world is at an important crossroads in the negotiations.

"We can either make the final push forward and resolve the issues standing in the way of a total chemical weapons ban, or we can allow new, more deadly chemical weapons to continue spreading across the globe," Owens said. "The choice is obvious - we need to push forward with the negotiations."

Other members of the observer group include John Spratt, D-S.C., John Porter, R-Ill., and a second as-yet unnamed Republican congressman.