Chair: During this session we will proceed with L4, and L5 – I heard this is ready to be taken by the COW.
We proceed with the draft resolution L4, tabled by Croatia and Australia – ‘promoting awareness-raising, education and training as part of a comprehensive approach to ensure access to the availability of internationally [US] controlled substances for medical and scientific purposes and improving their rational use
Any comments on the title?
Belgium: A quick update, we have been discussing the title this morning. This proposal by the US is something we don’t find on all documents. Sometimes it’s not ‘internationally controlled substances’. In our understanding ‘controlled substances’ is sufficient – it is worded this way in the UNGASS Outcome Document, s o we would not be in favour of putting it here – but would not like to block consensus on this issue.
Chair: Thank you, US – would you like to maintain your proposal?
USA: In our experience we have consistently made reference to ‘international’ – and it’s particularly relevant in this resolution, as many substances are nationally controlled but not yet internationally. We think it’s appropriate for this resolution to not be ambiguous.
Chair: I understand Belgium agrees to accept this proposal. Is this title acceptable to everyone?
I see no objections. I take it that the Committee of the Whole is ready to agree. It is accepted and we put agreed in COW.
We proceed with the first paragraph.
Chair: Any comments on this?
I see no issues, so I take it that we accept the first PP.
The paragraph recalling the 71 Convention – any comments? United Kingdom.
United Kingdom: In the last line, I think the words ‘to all’ are redundant – I know this was taken from the International Covenant, but in this sentence I think they’re grammatically redundant.
USA: While we’re sensitive to that, it is in fact what is stated in the Covenant, so would be reluctant to change the text.
United Kingdom: Grammatically it doesn’t make sense but if other native English speakers are happy then we can live with it.
Chair: Any other comments, or can we accept?
Belgium: A small grammatical proposal: after ‘mental health and’, put ‘which stated’ rather than ‘states’. This is just for grammatical reasons.
Chair: Before amending, I will give the floor to the Secretary who has knowledge on what we can do when amending language.
Secretary: If we’re ‘recalling’ something in an existing document, it would have to be recalled in an exact way, so we couldn’t modify what is in this existing document, otherwise we would not be recalling it.
Chair: US, please?
USA: We were going to make a small edit: it should be ‘states parties’, it is presently singular.
Chair: Accepted. We will recall the exact language of the Covenant. Any more comments?
Belgium: We would like to make a third alternative to deleting 3bis and 3bisalt. It states:
“Recognising that the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being without distinction of race, religion, political belief, economic or social condition.
Chair: So I understand that 3bis alt bis should replace 3bis and 3bis alt.
Russia: We thank our Belgian colleague for his attempt to make the language clearer. Nevertheless, for us it is not entirely clear how this paragraph ties in with the topic of the draft resolution – so what’s it added value? At this stage, we would like to have it kept within square brackets.
Colombia: On this matter, we’d like to support Belgium in 3bis alt. We think this reflects what we have been saying in the informals, particularly as we deal with the right to health in the resolution – and controlling substances is relevant to that right. We think this stands from the basic text of the WHO, and is of great relevance to this resolution text.
Chair: We will move on, keeping it in square brackets.
The next PP, ‘reaffirming its commitment to respecting, protecting and promoting all human rights’.
Nigeria: I just saw 4bis and I think I want it to be deleted please.
Chair: Thank you, but we are not there. We are discussing the text in pink.
Colombia: On this, this is a general package that we’ve been discussing. This is really in connection with 3bis, so we need to have a solution for the previous text before we can agree. There is also linkage to 3. So although we have no problem with the approach taken, we first have to deal with the issue in 3bis alt, and reach an agreement on this part of the text.
Chair: Thank you, so we will put it in brackets.
Then we have 4bis, which we will also probably not decide – but I understand Nigeria should be added to Russia, who proposed to delete it.
Chair: The text was agreed in informals. COW accepts it. Progressing to the next one. Also agreed in the COW. Next paragraph.
Russia: We have no objection to this bearing in mind the comment of the USA. Keeping in mind the title, we would like to insert “international”.
Chair: Okay so besides the consistency of the language. COW accepts this pp. Next paragraph – I see Canada and UK would like to add something and Russia would like to delete it.
Canada: The rationale behind including reference to 61/11 of March 2018 in the resolution is that we would like to promote the non-stigmatizing attitudes as they also contribute to access to controlled substances for medical purposes.
UK: This is an important piece of text; this really adds value as one of our priorities. We have experience in people being deliberately and non-deliberately excluded from accessing services.
Russia: Our view is that this resolution does not relate to the topic of 61/11. This problem doesn’t exist in our country.
Japan: We agree with Russia. We respect 61/11 but it doesn’t make sense in this resolution. We need further clarification.
Singapore: In the informals, we had some kind of offer to move the language into another para; we understand it is still on the table? We agree with Russia.
Nigeria: We also call for the deletion of this paragraph.
Chair: Sounds like we will have an other round of informals on this. So, we move forward.
Belgium: We have preliminary agreements with the delegations; however, the one outstanding item is the footnote – we would like to have some input from UNODC for some clarification on technical guidance re increasing availability. The references in the guidance are to other studies but unfortunately, we were not able to contact the relevant people of UNODC yet.
Chair: Next pp was agreed in informals?
Egypt: The opioid problem in some parts of the World. We would like to add an “international” reference here.
Belgium: I understand Egypt’s point, the commitment we made is referring to national levels so we propose to add “national and international level”.
Chair: I see Egypt is nodding.
UK: There needs to be balanced and comprehensive approaches on all levels, we would like an addition of “local” with “national and international”.
Australia: From a simplicity point of view, we could say “comprehensive approach on all levels”.
Chair: I see no objections, so the PP is accepted by the COW.
PP beginning ‘emphasizing that [tens of millions of people] currently require palliative care
Chair: If there are no comments, I would propose to accept it?
So it is accepted and agreed by the COW.
We proceed with the next PP
PP beginning ‘affirming that access to internationally controlled substances’
Belgium: We have been doing our homework and thinking during the lunch break. We would like to propose an alternative:
“Affirming that access to internationally-controlled substances, for medical and scientific purposes including for palliative care contributes to the right to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health”
Chair: So the proposal now is to skip the contentious PP and we have a new one, alt.
Any more comments on this, on can this be acceptable?
Belgium: This should say ‘palliative care and humanitarian emergency and crisis’, actually.
That’s wording used in the WHO guidance, and so it’s what we aim to address as well.
Chair: Do member states wish more time?
USA: We thank you Belgium for this proposal this looks fine except where it talks about humanitarian emergency crisis – what is this, other than ‘other emergencies’? We’re not sure why we in the Commission should be distinguishing between different emergencies. It should say ‘palliative care and emergency medical care’ – something along those lines. Even ‘palliative and emergency medical care’.
Chair: So I see we are already working on this new text, which means that it gains more consensus.
Belgium: Thank you to the US. Like you rightly stated Madam Chair, we can probably delete the prior proposal, but on the proposal made by the US delegation we would have to reflect on this. It’s not clear to us whether we would address the issue of crisises where would have in an emergency situation – not just individuals but societies, communities, that would suffer from international disasters – would these be addressed here? Because that’s what we aim to address here in this wording.
Chair: Thank you, but if you need to reflect on this then we will give you some time.
Colombia: As you will be able to see, this discussion remains open. Before we delete the original proposal, we should maintain the discussion open and keep the text available to get the proper context of what lies ahead of comes before this point in the text. Then we can determine what to do.
Chair: So we will do. Now we proceed with
PP12 Bis [‘recalling that the INCB and UNODC, within…
USA: Our concern here is that there is a treaty mandated rule that is specific to the INCB and gives them the responsibility for administering the estimate system. It is this estimate system through which it is given the authority to assess the criteria provided by member States, as a way of determining whether the State is giving adequate medicines for their population. In our view it’s very important for the purpose of this resolution to keep in the text relating to the treaty-mandated functions of the INCB. We don’t have any problem with also referencing UNODC, but UNODC does not have a treaty mandate in this area. This is really a question of treaty competence.
Russia: The Russian delegation naturally has concerns with the views expressed by the US. We would prefer to have a clearer description of the mandate to collect data – specifically that the INCB is mandated to collect estimates data for states requirements for narcotic drugs, and also data on illegal trafficking. We’re not against this paragraph mentioning UNODC, but we do need to have a clear understanding that the procedures for data collection within these two bodies are different
Switzerland: We would also want to talk about the INCB for the reasons already explained, and make it more specific. In the third last line, rather than ‘access and availability’ it should say ‘supply and demand’, because otherwise we feel it doesn’t cover the whole spectrum of internationally controlled substances.
Belgium: The issue is, on this topic, that we will soon have a decision on the ARQ as reviewed by the experts. Of course, then we would have an answer of availability – this may not only be on supply and demand but also on data availability. The expertise of UNODC to research and analyse this. As it stands now we will not be able to reach an agreement.
Chair: So, on 12 bis you will have informals. Next pp – as agreed in informals. Agreed by COW. Next pp – also agreed in informals. Accepted by COW. Next pp – also agreed in informals without amendments. Accepted by COW?
Russia: Just before “controlled substances” we would like to include “internationally”.
Chair: Yes, I see that is acceptable for consistency. Agreed by COW. Next pp.
Belgium: For the next three pps – we have been discussing them at length at informals, we would like to replace […]
Mexico: “recognizing the work and concerns”
USA: We are not comfortable by referencing resolutions adopted at the WHA. We have always resisted resolutions from other entities – we made an exception last year since it was addressing an issue that was common to WHO and CND, HIV and its transmittance by injecting drugs and other blood-borne ways. We looked at this resolution but they don’t seem to closely relate to our work.
Japan: We support the US proposal.
The Netherlands: We would like to retain the WHA references.
Russia: We support the US proposal and complete the sentence with the word “suffering”.
Chait: So, I understand the sponsors will take this to informal. The next pp has been accepted at informals. COW agrees, we proceed. Next pp is also accepted by the COW. For the next one, I turn to the sponsors as some wanted to delete this pp.
Belgium: Since this resolution was introduced by us, the EU, we would like to keep this reference but we could be flexible on the wording. I understand there is no flexibility on the other side who would like to not mention the UN coordination.
Nigeria: We would like this para also to be deleted. We believe this reference doesn’t enjoy consensus.
The Netherlands: We would like to be added to the list of countries who would like to retain this para.
Malta: Team Retain.
Egypt: Team Delete.
Japan: Team Delete.
Chair: I understand this is an indication for the sponsors. We proceed to the next one that was agreed at the informals. I see no comments, accepted by the COW. Last pp –
Belgium: We have informally agreed on this but had a technical issue so it is not included in the text (?)
Chair: So this is accepted by the COW. We now come back to the footnote issue as we have the Secretariat with us to provide clarification.
Secretary: What technical guidance do we need?
Belgium: So the numbers here in this PP were questioned by a couple of delegations as we did not know where they came from, so we indicated in this footnote the UNODC report where they came from, that is making reference to other studies – we thought it would be easier to have one reference. However it was unknown what the status of the document would be – is it a publication, where does the number come from?
UNODC Secretary: The technical guidance document does reference the 80% and the 10% but they are not in the same sentence and are in different sentences. I can see how that can be confusing to put in the same resolution. Where we’re at with the document is that it will remain a report for further consideration until we have funding that would enable us to move that forward in member States’ systems. Presently we have not been received comments but would like to move it forward if we have further comments. It will remain a document, not a publication for now.
Chair: I understand that the treatment rather was not to treat it in the same paragraph.
UNODC Secretary: I would rather it’s not in the same sentence.
Belgium: It doesn’t mean that the data is not valid, so maybe if we could ask UNODC for clarification where the data comes from then we could have easier footnotes. It would be useful to have this data by the time that we come back to the COW.
UNODC: The 80% comes from the INCB reports and the 10% comes from WHO, I’m happy to provide exact references when you come back.
Chair: That would be much appreciated. Perhaps you may contact the Belgian delegation.
We will proceed with the OPs.
Russia would like to make reference to additional policy documents.
I would invite the Russian federation to comment on what kind of documents should be referenced, or perhaps there is a misunderstanding.
Russia: Last March, the Commission adopted a Ministerial Declaration. Reiterating the commitments of 2009 and the Ministerial Declaration of 2014, and the 2019 Ministerial Declaration, we would suggest to sponsors that we should reflect the commitments shown in the operative parts of these documents – from these documents.
Belgium: The issue that we have as the sponsors of this resolution is that the other policy documents – for instance the 2009 and 2019 declarations – have just one short reference saying that it’s an important issue to ensure access and availability. The 2009 Political Declaration says in paragraph 19 that we just ask INCB and member States, as well as WHO, to cooperate together to ensure that there’s enough access and availability of these substances, as requested by the Convention. This is very short and in my opinion there’s really no added value on the topic of access and availability. The added value really comes from the UNGASS Outcome Document, and that’s why we wanted to concentrate our efforts there – not only because we reiterate this obligation, but also because…speaking about capacity building, training etc. That’s why we are reluctant to have a long paragraph referencing other policy documents, because we don’t see where in these documents we have a clear reference to the topic of this resolution – which only the UNGASS Outcome Document actually does.
Russia: We will try to come up with some language which would reflect our concerns. We could, for example, amend the paragraph:
‘reaffirms all relevant international drug policy commitments, including those container in the UNGASS Outcome Document of 2016’.
Then we cross out everything from ‘the operational recommendations’ up to ‘the world drug problem’.
Mexico: My delegation would prefer the retention of original language.
United Kingdom: Like Mexico, we could live with the original language. If other countries are considering on additional languages, we would need informals to reflect on that.
Mexico: For the purpose of demonstrating flexibility, perhaps we could accommodate the Russian comment by saying:
“commitment to effectively implementing all relevant international drug policy commitments, in particular”
And then the paragraph continues with original language.
Nigeria: We would like to support the Russian amendment. We think that it’s relevant in this paragraph. When we make reference to all drug policy commitments, we try to reiterate the most recent consensus in the Ministerial Declaration. We believe having that reference here is important. We propose the Russian language.
USA: Perhaps if the proponents of the alternate language could cite us to the areas of the 2009 document and 2019 ministerial declaration that deal with this issue of availability. We think that neither of these documents are pertinent to this particular issue. This is specifically about access and availability – we thought the Mexican proposal was a very elegant way of getting us out of this dilemma.
Chair: I wonder if the Russian delegation would need more time or would be willing to accept the language.
Would be willing to accept the language? Very good. So the Mexican proposal. Any more comments?
Belgium: We have seen this proposal for the first time and still have some issues on seeing what other relevant international drug policy commitments in this area are in terms of access and availability. So we still have to see what the idea is. Because now we don’t put the focus on the Operational Documentation – which we should do – but focus on all relevant international drug policy, not even saying the relevant ones under this topic, but a lot of drug policy commitments are relevant in awareness raising – such as human rights – this is very large. I don’t think this is what we all have in mind. So I am a bit reluctant to agree now on this; there will need to be work and flexibility from all sides.
Chair: It will go into informals and the Russian Federation will perhaps provide more information about specific provisions on access and availability and awareness raising and education and so forth. We leave it as it is for now. But still we have the Mexican proposal in the text.
We proceed with OP2.
We have several amendments.
Belgium: I know the Pakistani colleague had an issue with the proposed text made by different delegations. They gave me a proposal this morning, I don’t know if they are in the room, but if not we can look at their proposal because it is an interesting one.
Chair: I don’t see Pakistan. I see that Colombia and Singapore also wish to retain original language.
Belgium: Proposal is:
“Reiterates that the key objective of international drug control conventions is to ensure the availability of controlled substances for legitimate medical and scientific purposes, while preventing their diversion into illicit channels.”
This is very close to the idea that we wanted to convey in the original OP2.
Chair: So we have a proposal, OP2 Alt. Any comments?
USA: The US could be happy with this compromise language proposed by Pakistan. Yes, the one question we would have is, we don’t believe ‘legitimate’ appears in our treaties and would want to remain faithful to the language in the treaties. With the exception of that word we would be happy to accept it.
Colombia: Thank you. On this particular form of language, this is the first time we’ve seen it. We wouldn’t want to create a restrictive interpretation of the Conventions, so when Pakistan proposes this – what’s the source of this language? We want to avoid setting a precedent in a resolution as to the aims and goals of the Conventions, we understand they’re much broader in scope than our resolution in the language.
Netherlands: We like the new suggestion but would ‘the access and availability’.
Chair: I understand the Committee of the Whole needs more clarification from the proponent of the provision. But I see US.
USA: Thank you. As I look more closely I see a missing element – abuse. That clearly is the balance here. Perhaps if we could say ‘while preventing their abuse or diversion into illicit channels’.
And perhaps at the top ‘reiterates that a key objective’.
Egypt: We are talking about availability and access, so the other part of the equation, it could be ensuring affordability. There is a difference between this, but nothing here in these paragraphs. I would suggest ‘illicit channels, to this end efforts are needed to address the existing barriers, including among others affordability’
Canada: Instead of abuse, ‘non-medical use’ – this language was used above in a COW-approved piece.
Russia: In our view, the interpretation of legally binding documents and their provisions – we need to be cautious. Our proposal would be that we should discuss this in informals so that we can find language from the conventions that discusses this rather than coming up with our own interpretations.
Singapore: We want to thank Pakistan for the proposal. The additions made by the USA are beneficial and we support those, but we have reservations on the Egypt proposal.
Chair: the para will go to informals, but I invite others to take the floor.
USA: We appreciate the amendments of Egypt, but we propose stopping at ‘to address the existing barriers’ since there are many barriers and we should focus on what we can influence.
Nigeria: We support the US language, and use of the word ‘abuse’, it is agreed language. On Egypt’s proposal, it has merit in this para, looking at the Ministerial Declaration. There is an element of affordability in the PPs of the Ministerial Declaration. Maybe we can use at that language there, but it is important to add the element of affordability. We are flexible on how language is framed.
South Africa: We find the issue of affordability dear to us, as supported by Egypt and Nigeria and want to work with delegations to have a formulation included in the text. I want to propose that we don’t confine ourselves to the UN drug control conventions but focus on the ‘international drug control system’ – it includes all of our commitments made.
Norway: We support ‘non-medical use’, not ‘abuse’.
Iran: Since the international drug control conventions do not limit access to medicines to ‘a key objective’, we ask that ‘inter alia’ be included here.
Algeria: Two comments: we prefer ‘non-medical use’ rather than ‘abuse’, it is broader in nature. I also propose switching the order of ‘access’ and then ‘availability’.
France: We support the proposal of ‘non-medical use’. On the Egypt proposal and affordability, we also have concerns as to its relevance in this para since it was already included in PP6 which has already been accepted, and includes other existing barriers, and not just affordability. Affordability is referenced indirectly in that para. We call for the deletion of ‘affordability’ in this pp.
Portugal: We support the comments on medical and scientific use, but we want to keep affordability in.
Chair: the sponsors have all the comments in their hands, so we will defer to them to lead the negotiations on this OP in informals. We will now proceed to the next para, OP3.
Canada: I believe that we had a similar discussion on PPs on ‘humanitarian emergencies and crisis’ and we should refer back to that to be consistent.
USA: It is not appropriate to refer to humanitarian emergencies, we want to revert back to the original language on ‘emergency medical care’.
Chair: Let’s handle this in the informals. Let’s move to OP4bis proposed by the USA and Canada.
Russia: Our preferential variant is to delete the para, but as a compromise, we’d insert the following amendment to give clarity on what is being done by UNODC on its opioid strategy: ‘including rational prescribing and access to opioids for medical and scientific use’, with the rest being deleted.
USA: We appreciate these amendments, we need to assess them. But we also had alternative text, which would be from resolution 62/4, OP4: ‘Encourages UNODC together with the INCB and the World Health Organization, to continue developing the UN toolkit on synthetic drugs to include information and resources on ensuring access to and availability of controlled substances, and to operationalise and disseminate the information about the interventions included in the toolkit by incorporating them, as appropriate, into its technical assistance and capacity building programmes’.
Belgium: As we indicated at the informals, we are not keen on having this language included in the resolution, especially since this is a topic that should be in the PPs, and it is already included in there. If delegations insist on having a reference to the UN toolkit in the OPs, we also need to have references of other documents, including the Joint Global Programme of UNODC/WHO and UICC on Availability, we could also mention the INCB Global Project on access to medicines. The latest proposal done by the US delegation might have some implications on budget for UNODC so I am not sure it is the best place to put it here. Either we have a very long para on making refs to all programmes, or we keep the references already in the text in the PPs, this is our preferred option.
USA: Reflecting on who uses the resolutions and how they will be beneficial, then let’s list the programmes that are relevant to them so that entities needing these references can know about, and find them.
Chair: Belgium will therefore work on additions tonight. Now moving on to OP5.
Canada: During informals we had discussions on OPs 5, 6, 7 on the inclusion of non-stigmatising approaches, and a few states highlighted the fact that this is repetitive and sought Canada’s flexibility. What I am proposing is a new OP4ter: ‘Calls upon member states to consider non-stigmatising and inclusive approaches in the development of awareness training’. If this is included, we would remove references to ‘non-stigmatising’ in OPs 5, 6, 7.
Russia: I want to clarify with Canada whether I understand this proposal correctly: is this proposal to approve OP4ter meaning that this would also entail deleting the mention of the resolution on stigma?
Canada: No, this would only relate to OPs 5, 6 and 7.
UK: Thank you for including this new para here. I am wondering whether we should use ‘awareness raising initiatives’.
Colombia: We thank Canada for this proposal. We have strong wording imposed on member states. Maybe we could make this less strong as it could have an impact on how our policies are implemented. Replace ‘Calls upon’ with ‘invites’ or ‘encourages’.
Canada: We support both amendments made by the UK and Colombia, with ‘encourages’.
Nigeria: We request a deletion of this para as we need for any other para with similar elements.
Japan: We understand the importance of the addition, but we need further clarification on this resolution.
USA: I want to voice our appreciation for Canada’s flexibility and the proposed new OP.
Chair: This will have to be discussed in the informals. On the other issues related to amendments by Canada and the USA, can we accept those?
Russia: We would not be able to join the consensus on the paras where there is a mention of non-stigmatising attitudes.
Canada: One small change to make sure we are consistent: let’s use ‘non-medical use’ instead of ‘misuse’.
UK: We support the final sentence as it is currently drafted.
Belgium: There is no big issue here, but we want to point out that when we speak to family members, healthcare professionals, pharmacists, etc. we are not sure they are the ones that should be busy with non-medical use and diversion, this is an issue for law enforcement. In the sense of flexibility, we could go along with it, but we wanted to raise that point.
Chair: I understand there is a flexibility on the part of Belgium- we still have ‘non-stigmatising’ so perhaps for now we will keep it as it is. In OP7 we have some additions – ‘and technical’ that can be accepted, and all others except for the reference to ‘non-stigmatizing’.
Other than this the paragraph is through.
Belgium: We did not really understand the proposal to weaken the language, in particular in relation to education, so we are not really sure that we can accept it.
Chair: OP8 – twice reference to the private sector, a bit repetitive.
USA: With respect to paragraph 8, on reflection I think we can accept ‘including from the private sector’ and delete ‘, the private sector’ following ‘civil society’.
Chair: So this can be accepted by the COW – agreed.
Russia: Thank you Madam Chair, in the third line of this paragraph after ‘international organisations’ we would like it to say:
“in accordance with their respective mandates,”
And we also support the UK’s proposal to delete the words ‘and financial’ before assistance, from this paragraph.
Belgium: We would just like to make a small amendment: at the end where we talk about ‘in particular developing countries’. In other resolutions we speak of ‘low and middle income countries’ instead of ‘developing’.
Japan: We also support the UK’s proposal to delete ‘and financial’.
Colombia: We here propose to maintain ‘financial’, understanding that there would be an alternative from the person making the suggestion – we would like to hear this and see how it can be brought on board. Particularly how developing countries will be able to receive financial assistance to deal with problems of lack of access to such medications. If we get this then we can see how we can delete this reference in 9.
Russia: I apologise for requesting the floor for a second time on this. I just noticed that we seem to be missing a word before the word ‘availability’, it should say ‘lack of availability’ – I guess that is the intention of the sponsors.
South Africa: In our interpretation of this word ‘developing’, it also refers to low and middle income countries. As a whole, we think that this is a balanced paragraph.
USA: I think we’re a little confused about the reference in OP9 to ‘and financial’, because in our practice technical assistance may include financial assistance – that’s up to funding authorities how this assistance may best be provided. It’s quite outside the competence of the CND. Our preference would just be the standard terminology, ‘technical assistance’. With that, I’m not sure we need 9bis.
United Kingdom: Our comments echo the US, we believe that ‘financial assistance’ could also be included in technical assistance and we’re used to seeing the latter in CND resolutions. The instructions I’ve received are to delete ‘financial assistance’ and also to delete ‘9bis’. I’m sorry this doesn’t reflect the concerns of Colombia but I hope this is acceptable to him.
Colombia: I’m grateful to the delegations, but the original language proposed by the main co-sponsors included explicit reference to financial assistance, so bearing in mind what was says, we might say ‘technical assistance, including financial assistance’, and the rest of the sentence on the understanding that we are focusing on financial assistance, which is part of technical assistance.
Japan: I agree with the USA and the UK and support their opinion.
United Kingdom: From our perspective, the very inclusion of ‘financial assistance’ may imply that it could be international organisations providing international assistance to member States and from our perspective that would be outside of their mandates.
Colombia: To draw delegations’ attention to the fact that this is merely an invitation. This paragraph sends out a message. If we say, ‘in accordance with their respective mandates’, we make reference to the availability of the various bodies – it’s not just inter-governmental organisations, but invites member States, at the outset. SO actually the language we have already covers these concerns.
Russia: It’s not clear yet how UNODC, INCB and WHO will participate in the provision of financial assistance to states. We are ready to support the alternative para proposed by the UK: assistance provided by international organisations to developing countries.
Mexico: My Russian colleague expressed what I wanted to say. I was not able to identify how, via UNODC and INCB and WHO we could provide financial assistance. What I do understand clearly is the concerns from my delegation. A proposal would be to leave the ref to financial assistance but also add ‘build capacity’, which is part of the mandate of these organisations. So ‘capacity building’ or ‘to build capacity’ is language we have used in many other texts.
CND Secretariat: I want to clarify that the role of UNODC is to provide technical assistance to member states and this technical assistance can be provided via capacity building and other activities but it wouldn’t be appropriate for UNODC to provide financial assistance. So the appropriate language is ‘technical assistance’.
Chair: We wouldn’t include language that is not appropriate, can we delete the reference to financial assistance? Would that accommodate the suggestions by member states?
USA: We could delete OP9bis and keep OP9 as it is and mentioning ‘technical assistance’. We need to stay within our lane.
UK: This is a practical solution which we support.
Colombia: You have pointed us in the right direction to resolve the issue in OP9. We are not yet ready to adopt OPs 9 and 10 in the CoW so perhaps we could go to informals to discuss those OPs and solve these issues.
Chair: Yes, we will delegate OPs 9 and 10 in informals, but there were a lot of clarifications which will lead us to a possible consensus. We proceed to OP11.
Chair: OP11 is in brackets, what is wrong with the OP?
Colombia: We did not suggest bracketing the text, but would welcome clarity on how this report will be made on the implementation of the resolution, since the INCB is an independent body and they have always drawn our attention on the need to retain their independent status. It does not report directly to UNODC. As for WHO, how is the report going to be prepared and how can we keep the autonomy of INCB and WHO and retain this para?
Belgium: We have included this OP for the sake of efficiency of resources. In many reports, the issue of access and availability is mentioned. INCB, WHO and UNODC have information and we want to use resources in the most effective way. The UNODC would lead, but would draft the report in close cooperation with the INCB and WHO.
Colombia: Perhaps we could ask the secretariat how they would consider implementing the recommendation bearing in mind the nature of the relationship with INCB and WHO.
USA: I wonder if we could request the UNODC ED to report to the CND at its 66th session, including on its collaboration and consultation with the INCB and WHO, and continue with the existing reporting obligations – although we also have questions about what these existing obligations are. We share the concerns of Colombia that we should not be making a request of the INCB and WHO.
CND Secretariat: There are two ways to interpret the para: if it is a request to report to the CND, it could mean reporting to the CND in the context of the annual UNODC report on the activities related to this particular resolution. If member states expert a separate report on all activities undertaken in the context for this resolution, it would mean an additional report prepared by UNODC and this would require extrabudgetary resources for UNODC.
Belgium: We have concerns over the US proposal. We want WHO to provide guidance for member states, their involvement is crucial to report on the implementation of the resolution itself.
CND Secretariat: The language as it stands on the screen (UNODC in consultation with INCB and WHO) could not be accommodated within existing reporting obligations. So if a report is requested in consultation, that would be a separate report and it would require separate work and extrabudgetary resources. If we use the modifications proposed earlier, that could be within the existing report of the ED.
Colombia: I want to make use of the presence of the secretariat to ask a question: is there an option, irrespective of resources, to produce joint reports, pulling resources of international organisations like UNODC, INCB, WHO in a CND resolution? Is this possible?
CND Secretariat: We need to look at precedents but this would in any case need extrabudgetary resources.
Chair: We will now send the resolution to informals.