CND Plenary – Opening of the Sixtieth Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (Tuesday, March 14, 2017 – Afternoon)

Chile: Thank you very much Madame Chair. This 60th Anniversary marks a milestone which prompts us to reflect on what we’ve achieved and the tasks and challenges on our way to a drug free world. We can only do this with full respect for human rights and the values of common and shared responsibility. We underscore the fine balance struck in the outcome document in addressing world drug problem. We seek to bolster implementation of integrated and balanced approach in reducing supply and also demand. At the domestic level our public policies and programme have been tailored to what has been internationally established. We continue to improve control strategies while bolstering prevention and rehabilitation through periodic review of our interventions, always on a scientific, evidence basis. The public health dimension compels us to establish and strengthen comprehensive care systems and we must have measures tailored to specific groups, girls, boys and teenagers. Prevention plays a crucial role. We must have a gender aspect as well as being cost effective. We need to generate gender-sensitive responses. It will not be possible to public health to improve if we do not consider the differences with women and drugs. We are looking at the control of precursors. They are one of the biggest challenges. World Drug Problem requires concerted international effort.

Holy See: Almost a year after UNGASS, we’d like to note the efforts of individuals and states on implementation of outcome document. As we come together once more, we’d like to recall the words of 1961 Single Convention: addiction to narcotic drugs constitutes a serious evil to the individual. The prevailing root causes of both supply and demand of illegal drugs needs to be studied. The lack of economic justice and opportunity forces entire communities to produce drugs. We must look at marginalisation and exclusion in preventing supply. There should be increased education, focusing on social, health and ethical understanding, directed at the most vulnerable like children and young people. It could also focus on the marginalised. The conventions must be in line with human rights. We call once more on complete abolition of death penalty. ‘Do not kill’ pertains to innocent as well as guilty people. We have the ability to control crime without taking away opportunity of criminal to redeem himself. A criminal justice system is open to reintegration into society. Capital punishment therefore can never be tolerated – life comes from God. As Pope Francis has pointed out, ‘every drug user has a personal story and deserves love, they are not mere objects or broken machines’. The Holy See cannot emphasise enough that the family is the cornerstone of prevention. Families are important allies in combating drug problem. We will collaborate entirely with efforts towards a world free of narcotic drugs.

CICAD: National drug plans must include reliable data. We have shifted the focus from systems to individuals with respect for human rights, and similar principles are found in the past. We have unique tools to measure the progress in member states, the next will be presented in 2018. NPS continues to grow globally. We are vigilant in collecting information on chemical substances and medical products. We will continue to work for evidence based policies and promote monitoring and evaluating tools.

Presidency of the Pompidou Group, Council of Europe: The 39 members emphasise that drug policy must be developed in light of and in full respect of human rights. The death penalty is not in line with human rights. Torture is not in line. People who use drugs have a right to access health care for drug use and non-drug use problems they have. We are working on increasing awareness of effects implemented to address the world drug problem and no state or sector can work alone. Balanced and evidence based approach is need to reduce the harm to individuals and society. Civil society actors have legitimate right to the debate of solutions which we are working to achieve in our new policy paper.

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