UNGASS Special Segment Day 1 – Statement by Argentina

I’d like to refer to the process which is under way to turn back the adverse effect of the current approach to drug policy internationally.

We should start to bring about change in our circumstances instead of continually drafting documents. We should call into question our apparent current convictions with regards to the existing drug control system.


Many of us are convinced that drugs and crime are not automatically associated, and yet we haven’t been able to make sure that this topic is dealt with in different programs by different UN agencies. It would be better to dedicate resource to issues such as combating money laundering, drug treatment and alternative to incarceration, not talking about issues with paragraphs and grammar.

We welcome the various exchanges that have come about on the issue of drug control. As we now stand, we should reach agreement on the drug control regime that is based on human rights. We monitor the implementation of national drug control policies in other countries that experiment with different models.

We should do away with perverse hegemony on issues such as drug policy and respect different national approaches to the drug issue. The current approach unfairly stigmatises and criminalises drug users.

Argentina is implementing a new vision for drug policy, focusing on the individual and their rights, the way they tie in with the fabric of society. Well being and social inclusion are the focal points to be achieved. Drug use is a social health problem. On this item we agree with the INCB since in the recent annual report, they mention that poverty and inequality have an impact on the world drug problem.

The social health approach recognises that it is a duty of the state, and obligation of society to modify the elements of society that impact on vulnerable people that are most impacted by harsh drug policies.

Argentina has taken an approach that separates drug policy — there is a focus on supply side intervention, and alternatively one on integration and rehabilitation for drug users.

We would rather have a model based on social inclusion instead of prohibition.

The current system has caused more social exclusion and criminalised poverty. We must wonder if we are not slightly mad. Einstein said that “madness is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting to get the same result.”

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