CHAIR: Good morning and welcome to the reconvened 61st session of CND. I would like to draw our attention to this document and whether we can agree on the proposed organisation of the work for this reconvened session. I see no comments so agreed. We will now proceed with item 11 in regards to the preparations for the HMLS to be held in the 62nd session of CND in 2019.
Fulfilling the mandate given to me by the Commission, I am presenting this outline as my contribution as Chair of the 61st session to the preparation process of the 62nd session of the CND including its Ministerial Segment, to be held in March 2019. Dear member of the Commission by presenting to you this document I am fulfilling one of the main tasks that was entrusted to me as your Chairperson of the 61st CND; that is to contribute to the preparation process of the 62nd session of the CND, which will bear particular importance not only of the celebration of the HLMS but because it will be a unique opportunity to reveal with the international community what the international community has achieved over the past decade in implementing its commitments for addressing and countering the wold drug problem and to set the path for the years to come. The original policy document which was to be revised 10 years after it’s adoption has already been greatly enriched twice, particularly with the adoption in 2016 of the operational recommendations for better implementing the commitments assumed by all of us as MS. These actions showed on the one hand the strong commitment of all MS of the UN to address and counter the world drug problem and on the other the very different realities and characteristics the problem represents in our regions and countries and the ever evolving nature of the drug problem.
Hence, this preparation process has to be conducted in a unique way. Having celebrated just a couple of years both the UNGASS and the adoption of the 2030 Agenda as an overarching framework by which we states are to conduct our business in a way as to achieve sustainable development and leaving no one behind, clarity was needed to better undertake the vision of the progress made in the implementation of the commitments adopted by MS as well as the main duties for the immediate future Commission in order to accelerate the implementation of those commitments. This document is my contribution in supporting those efforts. [ ]
As we have previously acknowledged the thematic debated sheltering our intersessional meetings were very fruitful, bringing such an array of knowledge and diversity of experiences including at the personal level greatly enriched the work of this Commission. On the mission, the thematic debates reminded us that in the end of the day all our business as Commission is all about people, or as delegate from Canada put it: human lives. On the concept, due to its global nature the drug problem has different realities and characteristics in each region and country and its only normal to have several visions for addressing different priorities and it is only natural that each country will address its priorities and challenges building on its legal and political systems, its social and cultural values and its own history, therefore as our colleague from Iran stated, “as important as words are in our context it is also important not to get lost on futile discussions about specific terms especially when they get an overcharged connotation”. On the vision, lastly, the complexity of the drug problem and the creativity of producers, traffickers and users demand from all of us a comprehensive approach and the need to constantly revise our assumptions, our practices and actions. Sharing knowledge, sharing information and practices and drawing from experiences of other actors will greatly improve the Commission’s ability to produce better policy recommendations and consolidate the living role of UNODC and potentiate as well its efforts. [ ]
COLOMBIA: Colombia’s commitment to addressing and countering the world drug problem is based on the implementation of the obligations included in the three international conventions on drugs and other relevant instruments, always keeping in mind the principles of integrity, balance, and especially the common and shared responsibility. These principles should be implemented with a multi dimensional approach in order to leave behind the old paradigm that relates the success or failure of policies to the quantity of drugs produced, and/or the volume of existing consumption. On an international level, the natural framework for advancing all negotiations regarding the approach to the world drug problem is, without a doubt, the CND supported by the UNODC, the INCB and the WHO among others. At the same time, I would like to emphasize the importance of the role of other relevant actors and the need to strengthen the cooperation with other UN agencies in accordance with their respective mandates in their work of supporting MS in the implementation of international drug control treaties with a goal of guaranteeing that the strategies, policies and programs concerning drugs contribute to these purposes, and also to the fulfillment of the SDGs provided that both actions complement and reinforce each other.
The role of international cooperation should also be highlighted in aspects as relevant as the precursors diversion for the process of illicit drugs or the continuity of operations against the scourge beyond borders. In its most comprehensive sense, the international cooperation includes information exchange, reciprocal judicial systems, joint operations and exchange of experiences, good practices and lessons learned to among others.
In spite of all our efforts will drug problem is still a threat to the health, security and welfare of humanity. According to the WDR 2018, the number of drug users grew by 20 million people worldwide from 2015 to 2016 and the deaths caused directly by substance abuse increased by 60% between from 2000 and 2015. The production and use of methamphetamines has increased. At the same time, there is a rise in NPS at an unprecedented rate. Therefore, it is our moral duty to address each and every one of the aspects of the word drug problem and to promote general awareness of the devastating effects of this phenomena.
For these reasons, Columbia considers necessary the adoption of an integral approach against drugs focused on consumption, reduction and its social impact and the reduction of domestic and international supply, dismantling the criminal empires related to the drug business, and last but not least, having an impact on criminal economies and income. This integral approach should be articulated to other measures which allow us to address the problem in its multiple dimensions and manifestations: citizens’ security, law enforcement and public health, environmental protection, sustainable economic development, institutional consolidation and stabilization. At the same time it is necessary to accelerate the implementation of our national commitments. For that purpose we must have an objective and universal information system for data collection with indicators of the multi dimensional impact to measure the progress of the strategies, policies and programs which will allow us within a few years to realize an adequate assessment of the global situation on this subject.
In this sense, Columbia would like to propose the establishment of regular monitoring and feedback systems in multilateral scenarios which will provide an account of the state of the implementation of international commitments. Additionally, [ ] measure the impact of those activities on the reality of the illicit drug phenomena. For this purpose we need to strengthen optimized information systems because there is a need for complete and comparable information in order to feed into the processes of designing, implementation monitoring and evaluation of the efficiency of national, regional and international drug policies. An example of this can be observed in the multilateral evaluation mechanism of the inter-american drug abuse control commission of the OAS. This information should serve as a basis for the elaboration of a solid analysis and the formulation of recommendations for the design of policies that enable states to effectively address the world drug problem.
Ladies and gentlemen, even though there’s still a way to go in Colombia, as it was mentioned by President Iván Duque we will not admit defeat and we will not accept living with a threat to our institutional integrity, sustainable economic development or social progress. For this reason, President Duque on 01/10 this year affirmed on the occasion of signing a decree, which provides greater powers to the National Police in order to address micro trafficking. That tackling illegal substances and drugs is a global challenge of multiple responsibilities as much of the consuming countries and those which produce chemical precursors. With this act President Duque discloses the effort undertaken by Columbia in order to reduce it domestic illicit demand of narcotic drugs and psychoactive substances, especially by children, adolescents and at the same time he is calling upon the international community to act on aspects of the program such as the diversion of precursors and laundering. [ ]
We would like to take this opportunity to renew our commitment facing the challenges resulting from a changing reality, new trends and growing and persistent circumstances and threats posed by this phenomenon. Columbia considers that the revision of global drug policies should coincide with agenda 2030 and we must move forward in a way which means that when we meet again we will have achieved the preservation of the health and wealth of humanity, especially for new generations. In conclusion, I would like to emphasize that it is necessary to achieve an agreement in March 2019, which will serve as a guide for common action so that we can progress together, strengthening the implementation of the obligations and commitments deriving from the three Drug Control Conventions, as well as the commitments made in the 2009 Political Declaration and Plan of Action. The 2014 Joint Ministerial Statement and the UNGASS 2016 outcome document in order to achieve these tasks, it is necessary for this guide to include a monitoring and evaluation system of these commitments through an annual multilateral mechanism which allows for dialogue among all states in accordance with their national realities and capacities; not just simply to transmit information to the Secretary, as is the case with the current WDR. Thank you.
CHAIR: I would like now to open the floor for our general debate.
JOHN BRANDOLINO/UNODC: I’ve been asked today to provide some remarks regarding our efforts to promote cooperation at many levels which is consistent with our mandate to working together in a spirit of common and shared responsibility. We all know cooperation is critical to the work MS are undertaking here within the CND and also in your bilateral and multilateral relations. It’s one of the most important things that unites us all in the drug policy area. Cooperation and all levels is crucial for making the upcoming Ministerial Segment next year and in the post-2019 process; is the backbone of our CND policy discussions. It is the essence of the work of this Commission and a key element of the UN system to deliver holistic responses.
On the Commission’s policy documents, we affirm the leading roles of the CND as the principal policymaking body of the UN for drug related matters and UNODC as the leading you and entity and the UN system for addressing and countering the world drug problem. At the same time, the CND and UNODC are called upon by MS to further increase cooperation and collaboration with all relevant UN entities. The Commission itself has made an example of cooperation with its outreach to other relevant UN commissions. The Secretariat has been actively supporting the commission in its efforts to strengthen horizontal cooperation with the other functional commissions of the ECOSOC, including the Commission on the Status of Women and the United Nations statistical commission to provide examples addressing cross-cutting issues, the broader framework of the 2030 agenda.
Each of the commissions has specific mandates and areas of expertise for further expanding our ongoing collaboration positively impacts all our mandates. UNODC also places our work with other stakeholders at the heart of our efforts to support MS and implementing your commitments. And it is this corporation which you will notice he has undertaken with other stakeholders that I would like to give attention to in the remaining portion of my remarks.
First, UNODC the need to promote strong partnerships with civil society organizations and dealing with the complex issues of drug abuse and crime which undermine the fabric of societies. The active involvement of civil society is essential to help UNODC carry out its global mandates.
Second, strong partnerships with other UN entities and international and regional organizations are also key. Already at the regular session of the CND in March, I had the pleasure to brief the Commission on interagency cooperation under the respective agenda item. On this occasion there was a note issued by the Secretariat providing an overview of interagency cooperation and coordination of efforts in addressing and countering the world drug problem. I would like to use this opportunity to share with you another update regarding our interagency cooperation efforts. As you know, the Secretary General tasked UNODC to a decision-by as Executive Committee in April 2017, with leading coordination of relevant UN and entities and assisting MS with the implementation of the recommendations contained in the UNGASS outcome document. The entities involved include OHCHR, UNAids, UNESCO, UNDP, UN-Women, WHO, DPKO, UNDESA, DPA and the Executive Office of the Secretary General. I’m very happy that a number of the colleagues we are closely working with have been an active part of intercession meetings from the commission held from September to November, sharing good practices and lessons learned and implementing the commitments over the past decade.
Through our network of focal points, UNODC is providing regular updates on the work of the Commission and since April 2017, a number of UN system wide activities have been initiated, including UN system wide messaging, the development of a matrix of a UN system wide action at headquarters and in the field, a joint calendar of events as well as social media campaigns, highlighting our joint efforts and supporting MS. As most of you know, the Secretary General also put international drug policy on the agenda of the internal Chief Executive Board meeting in early November, where the principles were discussed on how the UN system can most effectively support the implementation of international Drug Control Policy through effective interagency contributions. [ ]
UNODC has enhanced its cooperation with the WHO including in the field of prevention and treatment. UNODC, WHO, UN-Aids and UNDP continue to jointly provide capacity building initiatives, develop training materials and organize workshops, including in support of the implementation of comprehensive HIV and HCV programs for PWID, including in prison settings. The Office continues to implement and expand the joint program of UNODC, WHO and the Union for international cancer control on access to control drugs for medical purposes, while preventing diversion. UNODC WCO-container control program supports MS to enhance border control measures to the establishment of port control units at see ports, dry ports and airports. UNODC already together with DPKO, UNOWAS, DPA and Interpol supports through the West Africa coast initiative, the implementation of the ECOWAS Action Plan to address illicit drug trafficking, organized crime and drug abuse in West Africa. During the 62nd session of the Commission on the Status of Women in March, UNODC, UN-Women, OHCRC and UNDP launched a jointly published practitioners toolkit on women’s access to justice programming, which includes a focus on the agenda dimension of the world drug problem and guidance to make justice systems and responses more gender sensitive.
Towards an early warning advisory on NPS, UNODC provides the basis for effective evidence based policy responses in collaboration with national, regional and international partners, including the EMCDDA, WCO, as well as WHO and it’s ECDD. Through it’s new opioid strategy launched this June UNODC will further enhance collaboration, including with INCB, WHO, WCO and Interpol to leverage the requisite expertise to address the current crisis. [ ] Currently the Secretary is implementing a “Did you know” Twitter campaign focused on showcasing joint actions undertaken by UN entities and supporting UNGASS implementation. 2019 will be a valuable opportunity to once again reiterate a strong commitment to cooperation to work jointly and moving forward together in one track towards achieving sustainable solutions and addressing and conquering the world drug problem. UNODC stands ready to support you.
AUSTRIA on behalf of EU: Madam Chair, I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union and its Member States. The EU and its Member States thank you and your team for your hard work during this year’s CND chairmanship. We would like to thank you for presenting the outline document (today) (at this reconvened CND session), which will be helpful, among other documents guiding our work for the preparations for the ministerial segment of the CND in March 2019. Thanks to the consultations process, the chair’s outline document grasps the status of the discussions. We very much welcome the whole process of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs Intersessional Meetings as an important part of taking stock, especially thanks to the interactive debates and presentations made this autumn. These three intersessional meetings underscored that there are indeed effective drug policies, or positive measures, implemented with some fruitful results. We recognize also the various and serious challenges and difficulties which different countries or regions of the world are dealing with in the area of drugs, as well as the social and drugs-related health risks that are linked to those challenges. Even if drug policy challenges differ from region to region, both the range of drugs and its illicit markets are expanding and diversifying as never before. This is why the EU and its Member States believe that the UNGASS Outcome Document, with its comprehensive, balanced and evidence-based approach containing all relevant recommendations to address the world drug situation, is particularly valuable and useful in guiding our way forward. UNGASS broadened global drug policy, through putting an adequate focus on the health side of the drugs problem, on the availability and access to controlled substances for medical and scientific purposes, on vulnerable members of society, on emerging and persistent challenges and threats, on the link to Human Rights and the relevant Sustainable Development Goals, whilst – at the same time reaffirming the unwavering commitment to the UN drug conventions, supply reduction and related measures, including effective law enforcement, countering money-laundering and promoting judicial cooperation. Therefore, we consider the UNGASS Outcome Document – the most recent consensus and the most comprehensive document – a milestone and a progressive step to improve the current situation on international drug policy. On 14 and 15 March 2019, we will have two round tables to be conducted in parallel with the general debate, and we will have a political document to be adopted at the ministerial segment of the CND. This document should reflect upon the future, on what we want to achieve together. We welcome the fact that the previous preparatory sessions have demonstrated that there is a general understanding that the ministerial meeting should notably be dedicated: 2 1. to the analysis of existing and emerging trends, gaps and challenges and progress that we have achieved over the past decade; 2. the commitment to comply with the conventions that remain the cornerstone of the international drug system; 3. to implement effective, evidence-based and balanced drugs policies; 4. a strengthening of international and inter-agency cooperation and national efforts 5. the necessity of further enhancing data collection 6. and finally the commitment to convene a review process in the future. The EU and its Member States stand ready to work with you all in the preparation of a ministerial document, with a broad focus on the aforementioned points. We see the necessity to identify the appropriate political message to be expressed in such a document and to start work on this ministerial document well enough in advance. The Ministerial statement should be short, realistic and action-oriented. It must show the way for an effective and sustainable drug policy and measurable progress in order to fully implement by 2030 the recommendations included in the most comprehensive document that the international community has adopted. The EU and its Member States are pleased to continue to work closely with the incoming CND Chair as well as with the whole of the CND, and we support the next Chair in the immediate and challenging task of preparing the ministerial document. At this point in time, we want to re-emphasize our position that those elements we have already found consensus on, should serve as the main building blocks for the work to come on a successful ministerial statement. Our future debates should be focused on tackling the still pending issues. Thank you very much Madam Chair.
UNITED STATES: Madam Chair, we want to thank you in particular for your efforts to develop a valuable background document for MS that reflects some of the major themes of discussion through the fall CND intersessional period, including our major areas of consensus and suggestions for action that MS may consider beyond 2019. This document provides a good overview of where we’ve been and where we might want to go. Much work still needs to be done to prepare for the HLMS. Notably, we will want to underscore to our ministers that with the increasing severity and complexity of the threats posed by the world drug problem, never has our work in a CND been more important. Through the CND intersessionals this fall, it was abundantly clear that we all share a common concern for the health and welfare of mankind; a concern that as the central aim of our three Drug Treaties. While we iron out the details ever high level meeting and as we look beyond 2019 we recognize that there can be no greater cause worthy of the attention of our ministers and our national governments than safeguarding our future and our youth.
US has participated actively throughout the fall intersessional schedule listening intently to the positions of our colleagues with regard to the structure, content and deliverable for the 2019 Ministerial Segment. We’ve built strong consensus in many areas and should use these areas of agreement to form the basis of a 2019 high level deliverable, regardless of what form it takes: whether a statement, a resolution or other document. Key areas of convergence that should form the basis of the 2019 deliverable include reaffirming support for the three UN drug control conventions, as well as the 2009 Political Declaration and Plan of Action, the 2014 high level joint ministerial statement and the 2016 UNGASS outcome document as a framework of international direct control commitments and policy documents that guide our work.
Furthermore, the strong agreement that the 2009, 2014 and 2016 policy documents are complementary and mutually reinforcing should be reflected. There’s no need for a new policy document as we already have the framework required to be effective in our shared goal of curbing the threats posed by the world drug problem. Underscoring the invaluable leading roles at the CND and the UNODC in international drug policy within the UN system as well as the treaty mandated roles of the INCB and WHO aimed at supporting MS to address and counter the world drug problem. Stressing that is times for redoubled national action to implement the international drug policy commitments within the UN drug conventions of 2009, 2014 and 2016 policy documents in the context of this national action we should commit to working together at the national, regional and international levels to equip ourselves to face the ever evolving drug control threats. To illustrate our commitment to this national action MS should put forward technical resolutions for consideration by the 62nd regular session at the CND. This effort could mark targeted and immediate follow on from the 2009 high level ministerial as well as outline priority areas for national implementation and allow us to engage in the niche expert level discussions we are famous for here in the CND.
Finally, another area of convergence is establishing a new target date to allow us to take stock of our collective efforts to implement international drug control commitments. This target date could feed into the preparations for the 2030 agenda or benefit from the 2030 agenda. This issue of how our process will feed into the broader 2030 development agenda is one area in which we need to find agreement. In our view our processes here within the CND should be separate and distinct from those outlined by the UN General Assembly for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The 2030 agenda addresses a broad range of development issues, when our deliberations require very specific expertise to inform interventions that are tailored to our shared drug control challenges. While many aspects of our common drug problem maybe related to the broader development agenda, the two should not be conflated because it would hinder our efforts to specifically address drug control related challenges. While we do have many areas of strong convergence a few outstanding issues remain. For example, we need to determine how we will measure our efforts to implement these existing international drug policy commitments. We will agree on the need to assess ourselves. We just need to decide the best way to do it. My delegation strongly supports the need to collect more comprehensive high quality data within existing mandates. This issue was highlighted as a major gap during each thematic discussion during the fall CND intesessionals during which we learned from UNODC research and trends branch that there are a number of opportunities to streamline and enhance data collection, including by sharing across UN entities.
These would be important areas to explore in great detail beyond 2019. We need to accept that we in the Commission are not in the best place to resolving this issue and the collection gaps. This discussion is instead better left the statisticians with expertise in developing the targets and indicators that can help us achieve the goal set forth in 2009, 2014 and 2016 documents. Engaging and protracting time-intensive negotiations on targets and indicators between now and March is not the best use for time as we work to finalize preparations for the 2019 meeting. Instead, we believe this data collection gap should be highlighted as a major component in the discussions. This would include asking our governmental experts to engage in a 2009-follow on effort to explore solutions to addressing these data collection gaps, to help us get a more comprehensive picture of MS efforts to address and counter the world drug problem. [ ] It is through this kind of international cooperation that we can truly protect the health and welfare of mankind and fulfill the funder mental aim of the UN drug conventions.
TURKEY: The Republic of Turkey pursues a comprehensive approach and action plan in countering the drug problem through a coordinated national framework. International cooperation is also very high on our agenda. We believe that the three international Drug Conventions remain to be the cornerstone of the international drug control system. The universal implementation is crucial for the effectiveness of the system. Naturally, we all bear the responsibility to implement the Combinations with respect to the fundamental human rights principles.
The CND as the prime primary policymaking body, and the UNODC as the leading entity for international drug control policies should continue to steer our endeavors. The INCB and the WHO within the treaty mandated functions will also continue to play very important roles. All relevant UN entities should continue to make their contributions for our collective work.
Drug abuse puts the health of the individuals in danger and drug related crimes threaten the safety and welfare of our societies, therefore, it is important to implement comprehensive balanced and evidence based policy interventions to address all aspects of the problem. UNGASS outcome document contains recommendations to address various aspects of the drug problem. The effective implementation of the outcome documents they will not only be instrumental in achieving our goals established in 2009 Political Declaration and Plan of Action but also will help us in getting closer to achieving some of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. As we have all agreed upon efforts to effectively address the causes and consequences of the word drug problem and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals are complementary and mutually reinforcing. We believe that the goals we set should be ambitious, they could be within reach, with realistic policies that we draw upon the operational recommendations and plans of action that have been endorsed. To be able to see our progress more accurately we need better data. We support improving the ARQs and in parallel to this effort we should also look into ways to increase the response rates to the questionnaires.
We are deeply concerned by the fact that many terrorist organizations fund their activities by production and trafficking of illegal drugs, along with other forms of transnational crime. It will be important for Turkey to see a strong reference to these alarming linkages in the document that will be adopted at the high level segment of the next CND. To conclude, I would like to reiterate my delegations full support and cooperation for successful conclusion of our preparations. Thank you.
JAPAN: Madame Chair, the world drug problem continues to be a serious threat to be tackled in a comprehensive and balanced manner. In this regard, the international community needs to enhance its collective effort toward and beyond 2019 which has been set as a target year in the 2009 Political Declaration. Japan beliefs that HLMS will give us the opportunity to take stock of and further accelerate the implementation of the commitments made in the Treaties to jointly address and counter the world drug problem.
The thematic discussions on the implementation of the Commitments provided invaluable opportunities for MS to learn the progress made as well as existing and emerging trends, gaps and challenges. Japan fully supports the themes for the two interactive multi stakeholders roundtables of the Minister Segment which have been agreed to the informal consultations in November.
Regarding the outcome of the Minister Segment I would like to appreciate your effort in preparing the paper outlining the way beyond 2019. In relation to our further work towards March 2019 it has been revealed through these intensive discussions that us MS have many commonalities in our positions as well as few controversial issues to be further discussed. Given the limited time left it is realistic to prepare an outcome document as concerned as possible based on our commonalities. Concretely speaking, the Commission should first make up minimum and general skeleton which we can agree as a basis for the discussion, then we can move to the next phase into fleshing out this skeleton. This skeleton should contain elements to be included in the outcome of the HLMS. In this context it is also important that areas where we have commonalities and areas where we do not so we can focus our efforts on the areas where we need further discussions. The following 6 points should be included in the HLMS outcome:
1) to reaffirm that the three international Drug Control Conventions should remain the cornerstone of the international legal framework for drug control. It is of crucial importance that each State-party solely abide by and implement these three Conventions.
2) to reiterate that post 2019 effort should be guided by the collective political commitment contained in the 2009 Political Declaration, the 2014 Joint Ministerial Statement as well as to the 2016 UNGASS Outcome Document taking into account the complementary and mutually reinforcing nature of these three document. We do not need a new policy document.
3) certainty to underscore the role of the CND as a policymaking body with a prime responsibility for drug control matters, as well as the role of the UNODC as a leading entity within the UN system for addressing and countering the world drug problem. The treaty mandated rules of INCB and WHO should also be highlighted.
4) to set that clear timeline for beyond 2019. It is appropriate from our standpoint to set 2029 as a new timeline with a middle evaluation in 2024.
5) to focus and accelerating the implementation of the existing commitment through an efficient and effective follow up mechanism including the strengthening of data collection system through ARQ.
6) to reaffirm that our effort addressing and countering the world drug problem should be in line with the goals set out in the 2030 Agenda.
PAKISTAN: Madame Chair, thank you for your efforts to prepare the outline for beyond 2019 for further consideration by the Commission. We value your proposal as a useful input. In our view, the coming weeks starting from January 2019 would be critical in negotiating and building consensus on draft outcome document of the Ministerial Segment. To start a substantive work in this regard we look forward to receiving in early January zero draft of the outcome document based on the discussions held over the past months. We appreciate the useful contributions to our discussions by the delegations and we are hopeful that the spirit of constructive engagement would continue to guide us all in firming up an ambitious draft outcome for consideration by the ministers in March next year.
We also note with satisfaction that the themes for the two multi stakeholder roundtables have been finalized. The preparations for the 2019 HLMS should continue to proceed in a transparent and inclusive manner and remain closely aligned with the mandates we have agreed upon in the CND resolutions 60/1 and 61/10. We will remain of the view that the 2019 Ministerial Segment of the CND would be a timely okay to take stock of the progress made in the implementation of the joint political commitments of the past decade to address and counter the world drug problem. Notably those in the 2019 Political Declaration and the UNGASS 2016 Outcome Document.
The Ministerial Segment would also help us collectively assess the progress made vis a vis; the specific goals and targets that we have set for ourselves a decade ago. The outcome document may underscore the significance of the three international drug control conventions as the corner store of the cornerstone of the international drug control system. The trade, the central role of the CND and align with these the treaty mandated role of the INCB and of WHO. The post 2019 efforts to counter the word drug problem should be guided by the collective political commitments contained in the 2019 Political Declaration, the 2014 14 Joint Ministerial Statement and the UNGASS 2016 Outcome Document which are complementary and mutually reinforcing documents. [ ] It should also guidance us on how to strengthen an integrated and single drug follow up on the joint political commitments. In this regard as we have noted in the past as well in the interest of avoiding duplication of efforts, Commission may consider the possibility of merging the two separate standing agenda items of the commission each related to the 2019 Political Declaration and the UNGASS 2016 Outcome.
On improving data collection we recognize the importance of the ongoing expert level discussions on how to streamline the ARQ. Those consultations should continue and also benefit from the outcome of the 2019 Ministerial Segment. The trust of the ministry outcome should be on accelerating the implementation of the existent political commitments based on enhanced cooperation and regional and international levels. It should reinforce the principle of common and shared responsibility.
We also wish to see the HLMS Outcome recognizing the need to give particular attention to children and youth to safeguard them from the scourge of illicit drugs in all settings including educational settings. Madam Chair in our negotiations on the draft outcome document we should not lose sight of the imperative of a comprehensive, balanced, integrated multi-disciplinary and scientific evidence based approach to address the various aspects of the world drug problem. It has also the ideal of achieving a society, free of drug abuse. As a state most affected by the illicit drugs originating in our region, it is important for us that the draft outcome recognizes the challenges faced by such countries and strengthen collective efforts to combat these challenges. The drug is a nexus in our region is a matter of serious concern and threat for us. It is our sincere hope that the outcome document of the Ministerial Segment would recognize this emerging challenge of drug terrorism nexus. [ ]
Pakistan would soon host with the assistance of UNODC two important meetings in Islamabad: 1) first ever high level regional expert group meeting on how to address the challenge of drug abuse in educational settings and 2) senior officials meeting of the triangular initiative among Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan in December 2018.
BULGARIA: We are approaching a decisive date in March 2019 when we will take stock of the important and measure measurable achievements in the drug policy over the last 10 years while at the same time we will commit ourselves to continue applying comprehensive, balanced and evidence based measures in the field of drugs. The extensive discussions over the last three intersessional meetings showed us the variety of achievements, concerns and the still remaining challenges in the field of drugs that have proved that this phenomenon is still present in our societies. The new reality compels us to apply and promote solid and sustainable responses that are adapted to actual situation and the emerging new threats. Those responses are comprehensively contained in the UNGASS Outcome Document which we see as a key milestone in the development of the international drug policy. In a balanced way it reaffirms the irrevocable commitment to reduce supply and related measures, including effective enforcement, while at the same time is focusing on the health aspects of the problem, including prevention, treatment and reduction of risks and damages on vulnerable members of society on new and persistent challenges and threats, as well as on human rights and relevant Sustainable Development Goals.
This makes the UNGASS Outcome Document a principal guideline in our way forward. We are preparing our participation in the Ministerial Segment with the understanding that the main focus of the global drug policy review in 2019 should be on confirming and building upon the commitments, which we have already agreed on including the international Drug Control Conventions, which at the center of the international drug control system. Therefore, we see its importance and its added value in sending a strong political message that will guide our responsible and accountable work in improving the word drug problem by 2030
ITALY: Despite the difficult task we believe that tangible progress has been achieved on the your leadership. First of all, we have undoubtedly advanced on the organizational aspects of the Ministerial Segment. Thanks to the approval of the resolution 61/10 last March and the recent agreement on the topics of the two roundtables which will be held in parallel to the general debate. On a more substantive note we think that the intersessional meetings held over the past few months have provided a valuable platform for interactive discussions among experts and policymakers in shedding light on existing and emerging trends of the world drug problem and helping to share experiences among different countries and regions. Furthermore, the consultations that you have met allowed delegations to come to a common understanding and to identify areas where consensus is already within reach as well as areas where more discussions are needed.
The main element on which deliberations should be based is the recognition that no new policy document is desirable, nor needed. The UNGASS Outcome Document was adopted unanimously less than three years ago and should represent our main reference for the post 2019. Priority should be then placed on its full and effective implementation bearing in mind that in the end these would contribute to the implementation of commitments contained in previous documents. In this regard, allow me to say that in order to be credible and serious in the reaffirmation of our commitments we need to have in place a functioning system to monitor that implementation.
The Ministerial Segment will be a high level political event which will highlight the resolve of the international community to redouble efforts to effectively address to world drug problem. It would therefore be important to identify key messages to communicate to our domestic audiences, as well as to the global public opinion. Allow me to mention three areas among others where in our view the commission should send a strong signal:
First, the need for more robust prevention policies, including a special attention to early detection of more vulnerable people, especially if we want to preserve the future of our children and our youth, with the recognition that this would be the most rewarding and effective investment that our governments can make.
Second, the importance to maintain a public health approach to the drug program, while at the same time, placing the human being with its weaknesses and its dignity at the center of our action.
Third, the strong determination of member states to cooperate in combating national and transnational criminal organizations which are making enormous gains from illicit drug production and trafficking, which are funding terrorism with and which are poisoning our societies.
We should not forget that the real challenge begins when we leave these rooms and are confronted with the real situation in our societies. In this governments should recognize that they are not alone and that they cannot be successful if they act alone. Civil society in the broad meaning of the expression, plays an essential and irreplaceable role. From NGOs, which face the plague of drug abuse at grassroot level to the scientific community and the academia that provide the evidence on which policy decisions are taken. They all should be included, their voice should be heard and the full involvement in the activities of the commission should be preserved.
AFGHANISTAN: 10 years ago, all of us adopted certain commitments to seriously tackle the word drug problem. These commitments are very well reflected in the Political Declaration of 2009. Now 10 years later, not only we could not manage to meet these targets, but the market has expanded vigorously and the price our societies are paying is immense. In Afghanistan from 2009 the opium production has doubled from 123,000 tons to 236,000 tons. Consequently, an increase in production of heroin has been following that trend.
Drugs is one of the main drivers of insecurity as it has contributed to the expansion of the Taliban influence throughout the country which subsequently has driven vast areas of lands out of the control of the government to be used for production of opium. [ ] Now our security forces are facing bigger and more complex challenges; they need to essentially fight in two fronts: terrorism and drugs. This has exhausted our national security forces as well as our society. Only in 2017 our law enforcement forces have launched a total of 2798 counter-narcotics operations. Availability of precursors and transit routes, illicit demand, money laundering, poverty and lack of market for licit agricultural products are other main drivers of opium and heroin production in my country. Madam Chair, without addressing these root causes we will never be able to meet any such targets in the future. In 2019 when our ministers get together we have to be realistic in adopting new targets as well as developing new strategies to reach these targets. We should focus more on data collection, information sharing and expansion of our cooperation in tackling this matters.
First of all, we need a real, clear picture of the problem. But before everything, we all must accept that this is a disaster for all of us; for each and every nation in this room. In Afghanistan, we will need to take some very specific steps to tackle drug problems. Security is the most fundamental for expanding the government control over areas that are being used for opium cultivation and heroin labs. Without security we will never be able to reach any goals in the near future.
[ ] special action to totally tackle precursors from reaching our borders. Extreme control and global trade of acetic anhydride, prevention of diversion of illicit trafficking, full and timely cooperation with the INCB to investigate suspicious cases and follow up sources of diversion are vital. If we meaningfully increase the market for licit agricultural products we would be able to provide our farmers with the option to choose naturally and logically the licit option. Currently, the case is totally the opposite. Farmers have reliable market only for opium. They do not have meaningful access to global licit market. We must cut their safe smuggling routes. We must destroy their profitable markets globally. If we tackle the problem of money laundering, we will be able to dramatically decrease the supply and bring the drug market under significant control.
Last but not least, we should not forget our responsibilities to the real victims of this drug menace. We should not treat drug abusers as criminals. We must help them together. Harm reduction has to remain a priority for all of us. In Afghanistan, more than 30 million people use drugs while near to 1 million of them suffer from drug addiction. We consider their addiction as sickness. We believe that most of them were addicted out of misery and poverty and in most cases due to working and that handheld to work circumstances. Please allow me highlight that in Afghanistan before 1980s not only addiction to opiates wasn’t there but also cigarettes and tobacco was generally rejected by our society. Heroin was not known at all.
NETHERLANDS: With great appreciation we now can take notes of the conference room paper mandated by resolution 61/10, and presented by you as clear and valuable guiding document for the incoming chair. Now it’s challenging task to start a final stretch towards March, which already around the corner
The past year we’ve seen very divergent views and consensus. But our cooperation is now more needed than ever. The latest WDR as well as evolving trends and developments show that we are far away from achieving our objectives in addressing the world problem. We have to find consensus on the way forward and to step up our work. In this regard, I would also like to commend you Madam Chair and the Secretariat for the organization to excellent fall intersessional meetings. They provide a very welcoming useful exchange between experts from a wide variety of fields enabling us to learn but also to help us make educated decisions and they really showed the strength and opportunities this forum, the CND brings to help us addressing the real drug problem.
We see common ground and common understanding arise between MS on the way forward off 2019 and the outcome of the Ministerial Segment. We are grateful that this common ground is now reflected in the final version of your Outline, in the final chapter in a form a skeleton and we entrust the incoming Chair together with all MS, all of us will take the common ground that we found in the last week and use it as a starting point to further build on.
First of all we need to reaffirm that CND is the prime body responsible for drug control. We can only do that with a successful ministerial meeting that can state a very clear and strong political message and we believe we have to work on this in the months to come. We also need to reaffirm the importance of the three International Drug Conventions. These go hand in hand with other international legal obligations, including those for human rights. We would like also to emphasize on accelerating the implementation of the commitments made for which UNGASS achieved most comprehensive consensus. Last elements, I want to mention our commitments to strengthen and streamline data collection instruments and domestic capacities. This is a crucial part of the way forward after 2019. Better data and statistics on the various elements of the world real problem is needed to get a realistic picture of the world drug problem and also to be able to take stock of a progress in 10 years time.
People are always at the center of our work in meeting the challenges of the world real problem; the families suffering from drug violence, the patients who cannot get their pain medication, the prisoners phasing inhumane treatment, the teenagers not aware of the risks of the drugs they want to take, the people who inject drugs but there’s no access to clean needles or substitution for treatments. For them we have an obligation to step up our work towards a common goal to protect people security, health and wellbeing.
CUBA: Madam Chair, we welcome the document presented as the outline for the way beyond 2019. This was the result of intense and extended debates throughout the intersessionals under your leadership, we managed to achieve important consensus. We believe that the document reflects the necessary balances in the different approximations and expectations that us MS have vis a vis the Ministerial Segment in 2019. We believe that it is a positive contribution and should benefit from comprehensive support from MS.
When we know there’s no consensus, my delegation would like to emphasize and reiterate some essential ideas of our own position regarding the Ministerial Segment of 2019, the Political Declaration of 2009 and the Plan of Action, the Joint Ministerial declaration of 2014 and the operational recommendations of UNGASS 2016. Mutually reinforcing documents, which provide us with a forum for programs, strategies and policies at national level, can be implemented according to the realities of our countries and regions. That is why we believe it is not necessary to renegotiate any document on new political commitments regarding drugs. We believe we have to focus on the assessment and implementation of already agreed text. The CND is and should continue to be the main regulatory body of the UN system for drug related issues. The members of CND believe we should continue with our work without undermining its functions or without any duplicity from other multilateral fora. We reiterate the essential role of the three Conventions which are the cornerstone of this system, which also give MS enough flexibility in the design and implementation of their national drug policies in accordance with their individual priorities and needs.
Expectations for next year are very high, and the aims and goals proposed, notably in paragraph 36 of the Political Declaration are challenging. But we will not waver before this challenge and we will continue to work towards it over and over again. The word problem has had a huge cost; it generates and reproduces the cycles of poverty, violence, criminal behavior, and social exclusion. Before these realities, we underscore the importance of international cooperation and joint and shared responsibility. After 2019, we need a broader commitment and political will by all our governments and I would like to conclude by reiterating that commitment of our country fully cooperate with the region and the whole of the international community in dealing with the world drug problem and to continue working with international organizations in this field.
BRAZIL: As we were able to observe in our national experience in the face of this Commission the world drug problem is becoming increasingly complex and requires measures in several different areas as well as increased international cooperation to be effectively addressed. My country as well as other sitting here today are investing large amount of resources and different policies in order to curb demand and supply of illegal drugs. Despite our efforts, there’s still much left to be done. Only two years ago, we gathered for serious and realistic reflection to discuss the gaps and challenges in the international drug policy in order to be able to together achieve better and sustainable results. The UNGASS 2016 process allowed us to improve the framework to address the world drug problem by putting people and their fundamental rights at the center of our policies and reports forcing the understanding that the health and welfare of humankind should be the main goal of drug policies. While the commitments of the 2009 Political Declaration retain value, they cannot be analyzed out of context, artificially separated from the developments of the best 10 years.
We should focus now on the acceleration of implementation of our commitments. especially of our most recent consensus. We hope that with the Ministerial Segment we will be able to send a concise and powerful message of commitment to addressing the world drug problem. It is our belief that the work of the Commission would greatly benefit from a common understanding of what we should be doing on the road ahead; one common understanding that prevents lengthy discussions on preambles that allows us to work on operational decisions. We must be pragmatic and overcome to the art of the artificial divide between texts of our previous commitments. We concur fully in reaffirming the central role of the Commission and of UNODC. However, it is fundamental that we guarantee the central role of the Commission by keeping our words here dynamic and relevant. This relevance also depends on the increased cooperation with the relevant UN entities and the relationship with other stakeholders. Finally, Brazil was of the view that we will only be able to make progress on implementation if we were able to adequately assess the results of our actions. We need in a short and clear timeframe to be able to have access to this improved data to support evidence based discussions. The updating of ARQs to reflect our commitments is a central part of this process. Additionally, but not less important we need to bare in mind the need for widening the base of responses to the questionnaires in order to allow us to have a better understanding of the trends and challenges for addressing the world drug problem. Better data will enable us to better assess the results of our policies and allow for a meaningful review of our commitments a few years down the road.
MEXICO: Mexico considers multilateralism as the most effective formula to tackle great global issues and the drugs phenomenon is one of them. In recent months the mexican delegation has confirmed the value of CND to bring about an informed to multilateral discussion one which is both committed and respectful of differences. We are now expressing our willingness to participate in an active constructive way and those deliberations which will take us under your leadership to a substantive and plural result at the 2019 high level session. Please allow me to share with all our members that the government of Mexico is continuing to work on a daily basis to implement its international, regional and bilateral commitments in this sphere of drugs, observing the UNGASS 2016 Outcome Document is the most appropriate guide for this implementation because it represents international consensus, not just the most recent one, but also the most comprehensive and action oriented. In our national efforts we knowledge the role of international organizations to channel debates and cooperation projects with a strategic partnership with UNODC through its liaison with its office in Mexico. We have managed to publish very recently a new report on the monitoring of the illicit crops on mexican territory. This reiterates Mexico’s interest in generating scientific evidence and data; one which will enable us to make more focused drug policy decisions with unquestionable data. We welcome that for the continuation of coordination and cooperation work between UN agencies and bodies, notably UNODC with WHO with INCB, with UNHCR, UN Women, UNAids and the statistics commission and other bodies.
We would like to confirm the vision of sustainable development and the complementarity of the goals of Agenda 2030 and drug policies, notably (1) on the eradication of poverty in all its forms, (2) promoting sustainable agriculture, (3) healthy life and welfare for all, (5) the promotion of gender equality, (8) decent, productive and well paid employment for all within the framework of inclusive and sustainable economic growth, (10) the reduction of inequalities between and in countries, (11) safe resilient and sustainable cities, (12) sustainable consumption and production patterns, and (16) promoting peaceful and inclusive societies and improving access to justice and the rule of law.
Madam Chair, please allow me to point out to Mexico’s recognition of civil society organizations and regional organizations and as key stakeholders in the road towards March 2019 in the sense, I would like to congratulate Argentina and the United States for having just a few weeks ago taken on the presidency and vice presidency of the inter American Commission for the control of drug abuse; a regional organization. We assure that from that organization we can also contribute as a region to a better understanding of new trends in illicit drug markets. The UN General Assembly in within the framework of the third Committee recently adopted the omnibus resolution on international cooperation on the world drug problem. Our countries reiterated that confidence in achieving an evidence based and truthful assessment at the HLMS 2019. Mexico believes that we will be able to achieve agreements to improve the collection and analysis of data, the generation of comprehensive statistics and the identification of the best indicators for drug policies for a tangible outcome of the 2019 session.
SWITZERLAND: On behalf of the Swiss delegation first we would like to thank you for your hard work on managing the work of the CND over the course of your mandate. We are just a few months away from the Ministerial debate on March 2019. This will be the outcome of a long road with several stages. The most recent and significant one being the Special Session on drugs in 2016. This session was a turning point in drafting narcotic policies more guided by human health and human rights. We are very pleased to see that this focus is now part and parcel of all discussions on this topic. We would like it particular to highlight the open and constructive dialogue between MS on drug policy following UNGASS. In particular we hail the intersessionals organized by the CND. These intersessionals where time for MS to compare experience in implementing the various practical recommendations contained in the UNGASS Outcome Document as well as to seriously prepare for the Ministerial debate next year.
During discussions Switzerland has always consistently underscored the central focus of its position: that is our categorical opposition to the death penalty, extra judicial executions, torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment. We have also insisted that the principle of proportionality had to be applied as well as that there was a need to discuss internationally the matter of access to medication. Guided by drugs policy more based on humans and their health, allow me to underscore that Switzerland has developed a national strategy for addiction 2017-2024. In particular, our strategy attaches priorities to quality of life and health providing advice and targeted treatment as well as particular attention to most at risk categories of population. [ ]
ROMANIA: I would like to thank you, Madam Chair for the tremendous efforts you have undertaken this year, and for sharing with us these guiding document which could represent a solid basis for the discussions to be held in 2019 towards an effective and sustainable drug policy by 2030 to address the word drop problem. [ ] the exhaustive discussions allowed us to identify common ground which gives us hope that by the end of the 62nd CND session next year, a meaningful ministerial statement will be delivered, We should focus our joint efforts on the broad implementation of all the commitments made until now while recognizing that the implementation of the UNGASS Outcome Document also contributes to the implementation of the 2009 Political Declaration of the Plan of Action and of the Joint Ministerial statement from 2014 as stated in the resolution 60/1. UNGASS Outcome Document reshapes global drug policy by putting an adequate focus on the health-side of the drug problems including prevention, treatment, risk and harm reduction, on vulnerable members of society and also on the link to human rights and the relevant SDGs, and also reaffirms commitment to supply adoption and related measures. In our view, the ministerial statement should build on the understanding that the tree Drug Conventions represent the cornerstone of the international drug system. Further on, the document should contain all the elements on which will already formed consensus on like: the leading role of the CND and the UNODC, the need to accelerate the implementation of our commitments with UNGASS Outcome Document being the most impressive comprehensive drug policy document, the enhancement of data collection to ensure evidence base and effective drug policies and the need to strengthen international cooperation. All of these elements should focus on keeping the human right in the center of our preoccupation.
PERU: The world drug problem is a threat to the health and wellbeing of the population and full enjoyment of human rights, democracy and the rule of law as well as the security of all states. It is a very complex phenomenon which is constantly changing and involves different components: consumption, production, trafficking and it is present in different economic, social, political and environmental situations. For Peru, the 3 international Drug Control Conventions is the legal framework, the cornerstone to dealing with the world drug problem. The 2009 Political Declaration and the operational recommendations of the 2016 UNGASS Outcome Documents are essential tools to dealing with the world drug problem. INCB, UNODC and CND are the main policymaking and monitoring bodies. Peru’s position which regards to the world drug problem is a comprehensive and balanced approach based openness for dialogue with different MS, international organisations and other relevant stakeholders. Peru believes also in comprehensive and sustainable alternative development as a tool which has proven itself to be effective with regards to reducing illicit crops using alternative crops to improve the economic and social situation of populations leading to progress and well-being. Peru believes that international cooperation to combat the world drug problem is essential in addition to each State’s national efforts. The basis of that is the principle of joint responsibility.
IRAN: Madam Chair my delegation in several locations in the past has shared with the Commission its expectations and overall vision vis a vis the 2019 Ministerial Segment of the 62nd session of this CND. From our perspective, there is no racing need to create a fresh normatic framework and negotiate a new policy document for countering and addressing the world drug problem. The current framework which has been built on the three key political documents, notably 2009 Political Declaration, including targets set out in the op36 of the 2009 Political Declaration, 2014 Joint Ministerial Statement and 2016 UNGASS Outcome Document provides an integrated and balanced strategy to counter existing and emerging challenges of the world drug problem.
It is our firm conviction that beyond 2019 the implementation of the existing commitments in conformity with the 3 Drug Control Conventions as the cornerstone of the international drug control system should be accelerated based on common and shared responsibility. We would continue to emphasize the CND leading policy making role, the UNODC central role within the UN system and the treaty mandated roles of the INCB and WHO. From our point of view a single track follow up system for implementation of the commitments, namely the 2009 Political Declaration and 2016 UNGASS Outcome Document as well as reporting of progress beyond 2019 should be established. CNB’s contribution to achievement of relevant SDGs need for high quality data to monitor implementation of commitments, including need for strengthening and streamlining data collection in particular, increasing response rates to ARQs could be examined as possible components of a single track system. We strongly believe that in order to materialise the real action to counter the world drug problem, the gap between means of implementation available and means of implementation record, including technical assistance, financial resources and capacity building should be closed.
In a very substantive note, it is imperative that the international community once again through ministerial meeting in 2019 reiterate its longest standing position that the consumption of illicit drugs shall not be assumed as a way of life or lifestyle. Let me conclude by reiterating our firm commitment to these collective endeavors in a spirit of cooperation, aiming at a constructive ministerial meeting of the CND in 2019 and reaching a consensus space agreement on the way forward.
MOROCCO: The world drug problem is a joint and shared responsibility for all and it should be dealt within a multilateral framework through effective international cooperation in compliance with the relevant international instruments. The 3 Drug Control Conventions are the cornerstone of the international drug control system. The Political Declaration and Action Plan of 2009, the Joint Ministerial Statement of 2014 and the UNGASS Outcome Document are mutually reinforcing and complimentary. The Outcome Document is the most recent political document to have been adopted by consensus. That document 7 chapters with operational practical recommendations for a more global approach to the world drug problem.
Morocco supports the very important role of civil society in dealing with this issue. Since 2009, the whole drug situation has changed. For example, in my country which has been flooded by hard drugs, such as psychoactive substances, cocaine, an ecstasy, we are also called upon to deal with the serious issue of increasing links between drug trafficking, corruption, money laundering and other forms of transnational organized crime including terrorism and the financing of terrorism. The importance of improving and strengthening the questionnaires for the WDR is essential because it needs to provide more accurate information regarding the new drug reality and finally, I would like to thank you my delegation for all the work you have done throughout your presidency.
UNITED KINGDOM: The Ministerial segment marks an important milestone in our combined efforts to address the world drug situation. As His Excellency, the Vice Minister from Colombia has already set out – the WDR 2018 demonstrates some worrying trends, both with the regards to the prevalence of drug use and the tragic loss of life as a result of drugs. It is therefore of utmost importance that we here in the Commission unite, as we have done so many times before, and build upon our history and achievements to ensure that the outcome of the Ministerial segment reaffirms the importance and relevance of the CND; and sends an aspirational political message to our respective nationals, that at the highest level the global community remain committed to strengthening international cooperation to address this common and shared issue.
We would like to thank the Chair and her excellent team for all their work in preparing the outline document we have in front of us today – it is critical that we now maximise the limited time we have in the lead up to March, to build upon the elements of consensus and agree on the way forward so as to ensure that we can protect the health, welfare and security of all our nations, including youth and vulnerable populations. In this regard we support the comments made by his excellency the Ambassador of Pakistan and urge the next Chair of the Commission to share a first draft of the ministerial document, whether that be a decision, statement or resolution, as soon as possible.
Madam Chair, as you so eloquently set out this morning, it is important that we remember at the core of the issues we discuss here at the Commission are people and human lives, and whilst words are important, it is essential that we now accelerate our efforts to implement the existing international commitments.
The UK believes that the UNGASS Outcome Document greatly enriched the previous commitments by providing an adequate focus on health issues and human rights as well as reaffirming our commitment to the implementation of the drug control conventions – it therefore provides sufficient guidance to the international community to address the world drug problem beyond 2019. As such, we share the views of many of those that have spoken before us that we do not need to renegotiate the policy detail. In this regard we reiterate the elements to be included in the Ministerial outcome already set out by her excellency the Ambassador of Austria and the distinguished delegates from the Netherlands and Romania.
As the distinguished delegate of Switzerland has set out before me – it is important that the process from hereon is inclusive, taking into the views of all MS, UN entities, civil society and academia.
Madam Chair, the global community have collectively addressed the world drug problem for over seventy years through the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, based on the principle of common and shared responsibility. We trust that throughout the coming months, we can collectively come to agreement on the way forward, to ensure that we can consolidate and build upon the progress already made to deliver the drug control treaties’ objective of ensuring the ‘health and welfare of humankind’.
RUSSIA: In regards to the parameters for the work of the CND following 2019 this is in line with the mandate set for in the resolution 61/10 of the CND. In our view the document distributed to us today will serve for further work in preparation of the Ministerial review. The Russian delegation fully supports the positive trend at the CND that is gaining ground; in achieving general understanding by MS of the main elements of the Ministerial review and drafting of its outline skeleton. We do hope that the 62nd session of the CND will see this trend grow.
We believe that the guiding principles in the work of the CND in the run up to 2019 as well as following the review should be the 61/10 resolutions, consensus based understanding that the Political Declaration of 2009 as well as the Joint single Ministerial Statement of 2014 and the Outcome Document of UNGASS 2016 mutually reinforce and complement each other. Yet another important principle which we understand enjoys broad support by MS would be that our efforts following 2019 should be focused on comprehensive and voluntary or conscientious implementation of obligations in solving the world drug problem and strengthening international cooperation. We’re not just referring to set political documents, but also first and foremost the 3 international Drug Control Conventions, which ensure the integrity and sustainability of the current international legal framework for drugs control.
The Russian Federation has constantly called for the goodwill-based and unstinting compliance with the Conventions, -by all size we are against any cherry picking approach or arbitrary interpretation. Here we note the assessment of INCB which many times set forth regarding principles for the limitation of the use of drugs for exclusively medical and scientific purpose is an absolute and unequivocal in nature compliance with this principle or non compliance rather would be a fundamental violation of the Conventions. In this context, cases of legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes, in our view, should considered non compliance by a State with the Conventions and we also think should be one of the main topics discussed during the ministry overview.
Amongst other elements which we think should be set forth and the outcome of the Ministerial review would include the following:
– reaffirmation by States on their obligations undertaken to resolve the world drug problem. [ ] given the need to reduce the supply of illicit narcotics, reduce demand and also strengthening international cooperation.
– affirmation of the role of the CND as a policymaker as well as the important role of the UNODC as the leading body of the UN system in resolving the world drug problem.
– affirmation of the mandate of the INCB set forth in the Drug Control Conventions, as well as that of WHO and an
– appeal to boost cooperation amongst specialized UN bodies in this sphere, where a leading role would be played by the Vienna drugs control platform.
The timeframe for the conduct of the review activities following 2019 with a possibility for conducting a midterm review in 2024 as well as a fully fledged review in 2029. If the international community were to call in to question the need to speed up or significantly reduce the cultivation of narcotics, the illicit production and trafficking of narcotics and their precursors or drug abuse this would pave the way for legalizing drugs culture. In spite of its very ambitious nature, the aims contained in the Political Declaration, we think, can be met with sufficient political will from MS, practical steps taken and necessary resources allocated.
* * * AFTERNOON SESSION * * *
China: We welcome the themes on the parallel roundtables. We are looking forward to exchanging best practices in order to promote best responses to the threat of drugs. We think we need to assess the current world drug problem and the efforts to control it. Once we know where we are standing, we can proceed with our work. All countries are combatting drug related crimes and the threats to public health. In controlling the drugs, many countries achieved remarkable results; in 2017, we have decreased by 30% the drug takers below the age of 13. At the same time, we are faced with a stern situation caused by the abuse of drugs. It has been worsening in some countries and NPS keep emerging while the means of transporting and trafficking drugs have been also improving. We need to pay attention to emerging trends but we can’t deny that our current system works. Globally, if we wouldn’t have the current mechanisms and international efforts, the harms would be much greater… we can’t even imagine. The outcome document, from March 2019, should maintain the current mechanism and defend the status of the three conventions as the cornerstones of the international drug control regime. We should support the role of CND and support the work of INCB, WHO and UNODC in their respective mandates. Every country needs to develop their responses to their respective problems, but at the same time they nobody revert the responsibility of abiding to our shared commitments… Legalization is clearly non-compliance and should not be allowed. The High Level Ministerial Segment (HLMS) should be action driven and focus on implementing current directives as we clearly don’t need a new policy document. Op 36 of 2009 should be seriously considered in the work leading up to 2019 and the importance of the linkage between the 2009, 2014 and 2016 documents has to be kept in mind, while the 2030 agenda as well as the principal of consensus and shared responsibility is also important to consider.
Canada: I want to offer a few practical remarks. It is clear, we have a consensus here that there is no need for a new policy document. This gives us indications as to how the outcome should look like: short, focused, something high-level and ministerial. We are looking for something that is focused on areas of consensus, of which there are many. In that way, a couple of topics that need to be address: First, what to do with the goals set in 2009 – Canada is not in favor of simply renewing the goals. The problem is not that they were not achieved, though their success is mixed, but we need a more comprehensive and balanced outlook. We need to send a message that CND is taking the results of the past 10 years into account and are able to reflect on previously set targets and our past work. We are in favor of the goals, so we propose to use them as a basis of discussion for broader and more comprehensive targets that includes human rights and, for example, access to essential medicines. It would be an important outcome from the HLMS that the CND will work on developing these.
Second… we are in agreement with the other delegations that promote a one-track approach. We recognize the UNGASS outcome as the most recent consensus and most comprehensive document we have, while the other documents are mutually reinforcing…. so the key for us is figuring out what a one-track approach means.
We think CND is able to consolidate the parallel discussions. If we are genuinely serious about proceeding based on scientific evidence, we have to extend, improve and streamline the ARQ.
Jamaica: We are pleased to participate today and welcome your leadership in steering us forward.
We firmly believe that the 2016 UNGASS outcome document reflects the latest consensus by member states, and the current global situation, and seeks to address challenges in a comprehensive manner. We followed the discussion on the post 2019 framework and we wish to place this on record: both 2009 and 2016 documents are mutually reinforcing. The 2016 documents is broader in scope and encompasses the political declaration and plan of action so our expectation is that the emphasis should be on the implementation of UNGASS. We look forward to WHO expert committee on drug dependence review (ECDD) on Cannabis. We reiterate our recognition of CND as a principal policy making body and our commitment to its work. We have submitted a candidature for CND period 2020/2010. Thank you.
Portugal: Thank you for your comprehensive and transparent approach in conducting our discussions. We fully align ourselves with the EU statement but on our national capacity, we envision the proceedings, having in mind the HLMS, first we should focusing on matters we agreed on and start drafting as such: preamble, stock-taking, way ahead. This would include matters such as committing to the 3 conventions and relevant human rights instrument, CND as main policy making body and the UNODC as leading entity in countering the world drug problem, the linkage of the past 3 policy document, involvement of CSOs and the scientific community. Both UNODC and CND should contribute to the progress of the 2030 agenda. We consider the WDR, INCB and WHO as means to identify challenges and the achievements. We think we should streamline and enhance regional coverage, improve the ARQ and we recognize the importance of interagency collaboration.
Subsequently, we may engage on matters where we haven’t reached general agreement… In our view, we should allow our minsters to have a fruitful discussion so we should focus on the consensus areas and not get lost in technical details. We think Mexico for their work carried out this year!
Angola: The world is a global village where we are all connected by the media. The work we do in our countries are discussed in this room – my concern is that we feel the answers are not always satisfactory: We take one step forward, we take 2 back. The UNGASS doesn’t seem to be implemented as planned. I would like the working language at the UN to allow us to express ourselves more easily. The young people in my country, despite countless prevention campaigns, are still suffering and are affected by a number of issues connected to the drug problem. Our current approach seems to be ineffective despite our commitments – drugs are still on the rise in many parts of Africa. It is known that children and young people are exposed to enhanced risks. We know poverty, quality of relationships and other social indicators are affecting this trend. A great contribution to substance abused is lack of schools and quality drug education. In light of this, we need to look ways to better serve communities, work on social interventions and enhance better collaboration between families and schools. Knowing the features of NPS lead us to conclusions that these legal highs produce similar effects to illegal drugs. As the nation of community, we respond to these issue from both sides – government and family. The government creates workshops and activities aimed towards agencies and institutions which are at a position to educate the public. Social activities and further workshops are available. All member nations of UN have the responsibility to use similar procedures to spread appropriate scientific information. With all the countries legalizing cannabis, it is a challenge for the members that aim to prevent the use of and fight the threat of drugs.
Korea: Thank you for your hard work. We are committed to combat the world drug problem based on shared responsibility. We take particular note of the outline of the way beyond 2019 as a meaningful basis for our work. I have a few points in preparation to the HLMS; it should be an occasion to reiterate our commitment to the 3 conventions as the cornerstones while recognizing the domestic nature of multifaceted drug problems that require flexibility, it is essential that we meet the requirements of international agreements. The HLMS should take advantage of the high profile representation and we should produce an action oriented outcome document based on the 3 key policy documents that are complimentary and mutually enforcing. This should include deliverables and a clear timeline. Since there is consensus that we don’t need a new policy document, we think the new declaration should be a balanced and rely on the most recent consensus expressed in the 2016 document. In terms of measures and target year, SDGs are the most comprehensive promise of the international community so we have to find ways of progressing towards that goals. The HLMS should also address effective monitoring systems to focus on the implementation of our policy documents as well as improvement in data collection, ARQ while taking into account the 2030 agenda. Importance should be upheld for the role of the UNODC as the leading UN entity, and treaty roles of INCB and WHO – we support interagency collaborations.
Nigeria: We acknowledge the outline, including taking stock and the way forward, and following the intersessionals an consultations, we appreciate the spirit of the discussions and you work, Madame Chair. We appreciate the information sharing within CND. We recognize the huge challenge posed by the world drug problem. We see many points of agreement, such as the importance of the policy documents from 2009, 2014, 2016 and their mutually enforcing nature as well as the treaty mandated roles of UN agencies. We believe our task ahead is to continue to engage in honest and open-minded conversations to achieve a consensus. The biggest challenge is to engage constructively. We reiterate our determination to cooperate with all delegations.
Algeria: Thank you for your work. We think there are major outstanding challenges to combatting the world drug problem. Trafficking contributes to various criminal organizations and destabilize many regions. Tireless war against drugs – the aspect of supply reduction did not deter us from other aspects responding to challenges therefore we welcome the opportunity of taking stock of the actions taken so far. We don’t think we need a new policy document, but we should reaffirm our commitment to the treaties, CND’S central role, reaffirming the complimentary and mutually enforcing nature of the policy documents of 2009, 2014 and 2016. Focusing on implementation and mobilization of resources, enhancing international coop. setting a timetable with a midterm review.
Malaysia: Thank you for your continuous efforts to enhance our work here together. We should aim to sustain the momentum of our previous commitments and implementations of those. We don’t think a new policy document is required, but the outcome should be a precise forward-looking document including: recommitment to the 3 conventions, the role of CND and UNODC as main policy organs, the importance of treaty mandate roles of INCB and WHO, as well as emphasis on building on shared values, expertise of regional bilateral international cooperation. On the way forward, we support the one-track approach and enhancing the ARQ. The challenges and threats of the world drug problem can be tackled only be collaboration – taking into account of capacity of member states, we have to support each other. We think the document should pursue a clear direction and we should have a restrictive timeline.
Tunisia: We believe focus must be placed on the 3 conventions as the cornerstones of the global drug control regime, the roles of CND, INCB and WHO – that are curving the surge that continues to pose a threat to global peace and security. We believe the documents of 2009, 2014 and 2016 are mutually reinforcing policy documents. To successfully tackle the world drug problem, we must proceed to take stock and expedite the pace of implementation in the framework of a comprehensive approach – technical cooperation is crucial. We also think a timetable to evaluate our achievements is essential.
Dear Mme. Chair, dear delegates, IAHPC is honored to represent the voice of a specific affected population of providers and patients who lack adequate access to the essential palliative care medicines listed in the schedules of the international drug control conventions. We have just participated in an intergovernmental meeting of experts on the US opioid overdose crisis, a severe problem affecting persons who use drugs non-medically in some high-income countries. Systematic efforts to tackle the problem, which is largely confined to North America, are necessary, and must include the voices of affected populations. These systematic efforts must not, however, undermine member states’ efforts, in partnership with WHO, INCB, UNODC, and civil society, to improve availability of opioids for medical use in low and middle income countries already facing a crisis of under provision of pain medication. It happens due to lack of education of health professionals and unduly restrictive drug control policies, not aligned with the right to health. As we prepare for the High-Level Segment in 2019, IAHPC requests member states to take note of the progress made on this issue during the UNGASS preparatory period, and the resulting Outcome Document. The 2009 Declaration missed the point that more than 70% of the world’s people have no or low access to pain medications when they are needed it for traumatic injury, surgery, obstetrics, opioid agonist treatment, and palliative care. Member states that approved the UNGASS Outcome Document went beyond the tick box approach of supply control and demand reduction, and committed to relieving this preventable suffering by revising regulatory frameworks to improve rational access to internationally controlled essential medicines. The UNGASS process and issues of inadequate access to pain medicines invited member states to think outside the 2009 box, align with Agenda 2030 and the Astana Declaration. Member states were also invited, and include this global public health crisis, which has its roots in unbalanced drug control policies, in the agenda of all future work. As an ECOSOC accredited organization in official relations with WHO, IAHPC is committed to help you do that. Meeting the twin challenges of the US overdose epidemic, and the global “underdose” epidemic affecting more than 70% of countries will require all stakeholders to come to the table. This should produce more dynamic dialogue between member states, affected populations, and the pharmaceutical sector. They are, of course an integral part of the supply chain, but are not usually invited to international discussions. Thank you
Dear Chair and Excellences, colleagues and friends, On behalf of two international networks, IOGT International and World Federation Against Drugs, with more than 300 Local and National Member Organizations globally, working with the full range from prevention to recovery I would like to make the following remarks: Reduce drug use prevalence The overarching goal of every Member State’s drug policy should be reducing the prevalence of drug use. This will lead to lower numbers of problematic drug users, as well as a reduction in numbers of adolescents who are exposed to drug use in their peer group. Member States should monitor drug use prevalence regularly and adjust policies based on results to make prevention programmes more efficient. Mobilize a million communities Evidence-based prevention efforts are even more effective when they are synergistic and implemented by local communities. Local initiatives should involve local authorities and public services, schools, police, parent groups, community-based organizations, sports clubs, religious groups etc. The UNODC International Standards on Drug Use Prevention list a broad selection of recommended interventions that should be adopted by Member States as critical tools to promote health and development through community programmes. Prioritize early intervention and assistance to vulnerable groups. Turning risk factors into protective factors is a key component of well-known efforts to protect and promote the well-being and development of our children, adolescents and youth. Therefore, schools and local communities should set up systems to assist vulnerable groups, particularly children. Identifying and helping youth who struggle with childhood trauma, family problems, abuse, school attendance, and other problems is important. At such an early stage, even simple interventions by teachers, health or social workers, and family and neighbors can make a great difference. Offer treatment, rehabilitation, and harm-reduction alternatives. Based on the principle of non-discrimination, all people with drug use disorders must have access to a wide range of services and comprehensive care. Treatment, harm reduction, and rehabilitation should be integrated. Such services must also aim at maximizing the affected individuals’ possibility for recovery, and include family and friends. Empowering those affected by drug use disorders through connecting the individuals’ own resources with health care providers is essential to reducing mortality and morbidity while preserving dignity and self-respect and empowering agency of affected people and communities. Organize local support systems after specialized treatment failing to reintegrate those who have completed specialized treatment back into their communities’ waste resources and causes human suffering. Treatment programmes must plan for reintegration with society afterwards; a place to live, meaningful work, a social network, and meaningful leisure activities. Treatment centers and local municipalities must coordinate reintegration from the very start of the treatment programme. Support self-help groups for drug users and those in recovery. Across the globe, self-help groups for drug users (current users as well as those in recovery), have proven successful as a tool for escaping from drug abuse and reintegration into society after treatment. Such groups are therefore a very useful complement to more formal treatment services, and should be integrated into the totality of treatment and recovery services in all countries. Support alternative development. A development approach aimed at improving people’s quality of life is needed to mobilize local communities where illicit drugs are produced. Governments in these countries should fund alternative development programmes in drug-producing areas. The most conflict-ridden countries in Latin America, (West) Africa and Asia need support from the international community. Good governance is also a critical part of alternative development; if corruption is not controlled, drug-related crime cannot be controlled. Develop and implement alternatives to incarceration Several countries have already implemented an array of diversion programs to replace incarceration or fines as reaction to minor drug offences, including dissuasion commissions, youth contracts, drug courts, and rehabilitation programs for drug users. More countries should follow suit and experiences should be shared internationally, organized through UNODC. Implement the principle of proportionality in sanctions. Sanctions for drug-related offences must be proportional to the crime committed. The international drug conventions do not demand incarceration for drug users. Rather, they encourage prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation as alternatives. These approaches focus on treating the substance abuse disorder underlying criminal activity. Additionally, militarization of law enforcement, capital punishment and other inhumane and disproportionate methods should be abolished as they are not in accordance with the spirit of UN conventions. Drug use is a multifaceted problem with bio-socio-psychological origin. That is why civil society can bring powerful results when it addresses all these elements on various levels. Civil society has the advantage of being more flexible, of being rooted among people – those it serves and in understanding the structures of governance in their country. Those are strong tools for solving the problem and creating the change we want to see in the world. Prevent – don’t – promote.
Madame Chair, Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, Thank you very much for giving me the floor. I am making this statement on behalf of the International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC). IDPC is a global network of more than 170 NGOs that come together to promote drug policies that are based on human rights, human security, social inclusion and public health. The 2019 Ministerial Segment will be a critical opportunity to build upon the important progress achieved with the UNGASS Outcome Document. In preparation for this high-level event, the IDPC network has developed four policy recommendations. Firstly, the IDPC network recommends that the international community move away from the ‘drug free world’ targets set out in OP 36 of the 2009 Political Declaration. The data presented in the 2018 World Drug Report clearly shows that any progress towards these targets has failed to materialise. More importantly, the efforts made by member states to achieve these targets have distorted policy priorities, diverting funding away from proven public health and development approaches. They have also been used to justify a range of serious human rights abuses, notably the use of the death penalty and extrajudicial killings. Beyond 2019, we call on the international community to consider more meaningful goals and targets that can prevent further human rights abuses and achieve improvements in public health and development outcomes. Such goals and targets should be in line with the Sustainable Development Goals, the UNGASS outcome document, and international human rights commitments. Secondly, and in an effort to ensure effective UN system-wide coherence in addressing drug issues globally, we recommend that the Ministerial Segment meaningfully reflect upon the impacts of drug policies on the UN goals of promoting health, human rights, development, peace and security. UN drug policies do not operate in a vacuum. International human rights obligations and the Sustainable Development Goals provide a framework under which all UN policies and programmes should be developed and implemented. We therefore welcome the statements made today by the UNODC and various member states on the need to improve inter-agency cooperation for the years ahead– and we welcome the participation of various UN agencies such as the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, in the debates in Vienna. Thirdly, we recommend that the discussions at the Ministerial Segment and CND next year reflect the realities of drug policy developments on the ground. This includes the need for a meaningful discussion on the implications of newly established regulated cannabis markets, as was called for this morning by one of the delegates. It is also necessary to discuss the drug policy developments that have resulted in egregious human rights violations, including the extrajudicial killings already mentioned, but also the denial of health and harm reduction services that can prevent deaths and save lives. Finally, we recommend ending punitive approaches and putting people and communities first. This requires that the global drug strategy beyond 2019 puts people and communities at the centre, and seeks to improve their living conditions, address their situations of vulnerability and protect their human rights – in line with the SDG vision of ‘leaving no one behind’. I will end this statement with a plea to the CND to continue to ensure the meaningful participation of civil society, in particular most affected groups, in drug policy debates at the Ministerial Segment, and beyond 2019, in any future UN debates on drug policy. Thank you very much for your attention.
Chair: Thanks to the civil society representatives for their statements. Now, back to our general debate.
Bolivia: Congratulations on the manner in which you have carried out your work in your term, Madame Chair. We acknowledge the outline and take those recommendations on board. We endorse Colombia’s statements from earlier today. This global problem impacts many fields. We have faced war and the problem of drugs in an independent manner – production, trafficking and related issues. We declared a state policy strategy and provided financing of about 5 hundred million for direct control and complementary activates, the EU supports us in the area of alternative development, while the UNODC in monitoring and information exchange. Many institutions in Bolivia are dealing with drugs, but we established national council to work with drugs related issues and many ministries are advised by that council to combat drug trafficking. We joined the Container Control Program… we work with the US and exchange information on a regular basis. Page 12 of IDPC’s report shows great data about coca in Bolivia. We carry out legal cultivation of this crop, 163 thousand hectares grew to 213 – that is a 30% increase. My delegation believes its important to share that with 31 thousand controlled hectares, we reduced number by 20%. In so doing, we demonstrate how effective our control is, that goes against general trends in the region. Increasing production of drugs doesn’t have to do with countries producing more, it has to do with increasing demand. While regulations are carried out to control cultivation, consumer countries need to do more to prevent the increase in consumption through better regulation. This is part of shared responsibility.
Chair: With no more delegation raising their plate, I am closing the general debate and we can move on to the final item on our agenda. Pre agenda for the HLMS 14-15 March has been shared with you. Does anyone have any comments on that document? We will resume our meeting tomorrow.
Secretariat: Tomorrow we will convene in a different setting, CCPCJ and CND members will sit in the front of the room. See you in the morning!