UNGASS Special Segment Day 1 – statement by the League of Arab States

Mr Chairman, despite all the efforts exerted internationally, the production of drugs continues to grow, as does the demand and trafficking of these substances. This is a source of deep concern.

International and regional agreements have confirmed the negative impacts of drugs on all facets of life. The conventions have confirmed also that no country can act unilaterally in the face of this problem, highlighting the need for a commitment to solidarity.


Here, the League has dealt with this issue through a series of measures taken through its specialised ministerial council in order to promote the capacity of member states at the judicial level.

  1. The council of ministers of the interior have adopted measures in 1986 to combat production and trafficking of drugs.
  2. In 1994, the council agreed to combat the illicit trade in drugs which went into effect in 1996, and which has been ratified by 14 Arab states so far.
  3. The Arab health ministers council in 2015 agreed to hold a seminar under the title ‘Psychological health: combating addiction,’ with the purpose of agreeing an action plan on the issue.
  4. Arab ministers of health have agreed to establish national data bases that would include the size of the drug problem and provide information on services available to deal with the problem.
  5. A technical committee has been tasked with preparing a complete study on replacement therapy.

The League hopes to continue the cooperation with the UNODC based on a 2010 agreement between the two bodies which will tackle the issue of drug use among youth. We aim to give more attention to drug addiction treatment institutions in the area.

In closing, it must be noted that the War on Drugs often focuses on the security dimension and legislative measures. Sometimes it neglects the need for a social approach. The main challenge is to offer treatment to addicts and successfully reintegrate them to society.

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