Plenary – Item 6. Follow-up to the implementation at the national, regional and international levels of all commitments, as reflected in the Ministerial Declaration of 2019, to address and counter the world drug problem

Chair. ‘As you know, before the 2019 CND we held a Ministerial Segment to take stock of the progress made on the implementation of the 2009 Political Declaration. At the opening of the Segment Ministers adopted by consensus the 2019 Ministerial Declaration. While acknwledging that tangible progress had been achieved, noted with concern the challenges posed by the world drug problem, and committed to implement the 2009 Political Declaration, the 2014 Ministerial Declaration, and the 2016 UNGASS Outcome Document. MS reiterated the principle policy-making role of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, dedicating a single standing item in each session to the implementation of all commitments. In the reconvened CND62, CND adopted a plan of work for interactive thematic meetings. The 2nd of these meetings took place in October this year. A summary is available as a Conference Room Paper. In its resolution 63/4, the CND requested the ED to report on the implementation of that resolution, at the 64th session. In its resolution 63/5, the CND requested did the same. The Commission also has before it a report by the Secretariat on comabatting drug cultivation in Afghanistan.

UNODC Secretariat. ‘I would like to highlight some of CND’s activities to support the implementation of international drug policy commitments. Especially during the interesessional period the Commission focuses on implementation.  The thematic discussions started in 2016, with the adoption of the 2016 UNGASS Outcome Document. In 2019 we created a multiyear thematic world plan. Since then, hundreds of delegations, civil society, experts, were involved in these discussions. The 2020 intersessional was the first to be hold on hybrid format.

The 5 CND subsidiary bodies provide a platform to regional practitionars to highlight trends and provide input. The secretariat has also created a website on the follow-up work, as well as elearning tools. Our CND has a twitter and instagram account that allows us to reach to a broader scope of stakeholders.

At a national level, national practitioner workshops to discuss the international commitments and how they can be implementad have been held. The first oline implementation workshop with Kenya was organised in September 2020.’

Angela Me (Research branch UNODC). ‘Drug use is expanding, and continued to expand in the last decade. For a number of reasons, some of which are well-research, and some of them less. Soem determinant factors are population growth, increased urbanisation, increased on income. Between 2009 to 2018 there has been an increase of 30%. Expansion is not equally distributed amongst countries. Most of the increase is in developing countries, amongst other reason that in developing countries population between 18 and 25 has mushroomed, in comparison to developed countries. It is within developing countrieswhere we should find the largest expansion. In the next WDR we will have a section on the impact on demographic changes. In terms of health harms, the countries that have had the highest prevalence of people who inject drugs, and the resulting health prevalence, still face important challenge. The prevalence of drug use across socioeconomic classess, shows that the more resourceful groups are more likely to start drug use. But the health harm is concentrated in people from lower income backgrounds.’

Andres Finguerut (Prevention & health branch UNODC).  ‘COVD19 has exacerbated the need for drug preventon and treatment services. We have adapted prevention intervention materials, and we have published new materials for parents and in refugee settings.  People in prison are more vulnerable to COVID19, and we promote alternatives to incarceration. SInce the beginning of the pandemic, we have urged countries to increase availability of HIV/AIDS treatment and care amongst people who use drugs. But we need to do more to achieve the SDGs. Prevention of drug use needs to be expanded in line with UNODC Standards. Treatment and care also need to be greatly expanded. New guidelines on the SOS programme, integrating human rights standards and scientific evidence, has been published. People living in prison need to access to the same degree of care available in the community. In line with the Nelson Mandela Rules, providing atlernatives to punishment and incarceration, as well as treatment to those engaged in the criminal legal system, is critical to reduce HIV/AIDS. The recently approved UNAIDS strategy puts people at the centre, including people with drug use. From an HIV perspective, the focus on people who inject drug is critical, as last year they accounted for 10% amongst people who use drugs world wide. UNODC will continue focusing on provision of treatment and prevention service for these drugs. For women, the pandemic has brought increased risk of health-related harm, including HIV and HCV. This week, we are launching a new publication on the preventon of HIV transmission amongst women. Peer-led interventions are vital for prevention services amidst lockdown. UNODC has advocated for the rights of people who use drugs. We work to fund and empower community organisations, including people who use drugs’.

UNODC. ‘As part of our normative work at UNODC, we continue to collect drug control information. Through the container control programme, UNODC supported more than 55 states to improve border controls. In 2020, the country reported the highest number of seizures, including a recording amount fo cocaine.  The CrimJust programme complements this work through follow-up investigations in many of the drug seizure cases. For instance, 5 online fora were held in 2020. We have created regional networks to facilitate international cooperation in transnational cases. We also provided taylor-made capacity-building on the programmes on cyber-crimes, and on opioids’.

Jorgue Eduardo Rios (UNODC). ‘Over the last year, the UNODC has continued to strengthen its partnership with the private sector, in order to ensure that it is involved from the beginning throughout design and implementation for alternative development. There is no substitute for private sector, good product, and entrepreneurship. Over the last years, programmes in Myanmar, Lao, and Bolivia have successfully worked with a coffee company. We have helped with funding since the beginning. In Bolivia, beneficiaries of UNODC-sponsored project just initially received funding for exporting coffee to Europe – a significant positive step. The Green Gold cooperative in has also been a successful example of transition from poppy to cofee growth. Yes, we need to reduce illicit crop cultivation, but we must also make sure that we don’t push families to more informal economies’.

European Union. ‘I speak on behave of the EU. Republic of Macedonia, Iceland, Norway, Ukraine, the Republic of Moldovia, Armenia, Georgia, Andorra, Republic of San Marino also adhere. The UNGASS Outcome Document is the document that responds best to the challenges in the ground, especially on human rights and health. The COVID19 pandemic has highlighted how important this use. We support the multiyear workplan for CND. The international community needs to step up it’s effort. It’s important to enhance cooperation between UNODC and other UN agencies. The EU supports the UN system Common Position and Task Team in their efforts to make sure nobody is left behind. We need to accelerate the implementation of the Common Position. The impact and repercussions of COVID19 pandemic might be long-lasting. We welcome the streamlined ARQ, which now comprehensively captures the drug phenomena. We have funded and supported it. Capacity-building in the next years will be crucial, as we help countries to collect and The EU is committed to a balanced, multidisciplnary approach to the world drug situation. This approach is reaffirmed by the new EU Drugs Strategy 2021-2025. With the respect and promotion of human rights at its core, the Strategy also promotes gender equality and health equity. With this year’s resolution we want to emphasise that prevention and treatment for people who use drugs must be made available and afforable, in a way that respects human rights and drug policies. We welcomed the UNODC Strategy 2021-2025 presented recently. We will support the work of UNODC in the promotion of the rule of law, and the SDGs. As we know, the SDGs and the international drug conventions are mutually reinforcing. In order to achieve SDG3 we need to reduce drug use, yes, but also to end HIV, HCV, TB, and other diseases. Through SDG16 we need to end violence, organised crime. It’s important to keep the SDGs in our mind when we implement drug policies’.

Japan. ‘Japan’s drug policy is guided by our 5 year drug prevention strategy. As for demand reduction measures, we have set key measures, such as: (1) including the normative awareness amongst the general population, (2) providing drug abuses with treatment and support fo social operation. We implement these obligations in cooperation with UN agencies. Thanks to this approach, we have maintained low prevalence of drug use. We believe it is crutial to pursue drug strategies aligned to the international drug conventions, adjusted to the circumstances across nations. We should not establish the same standards across coutnries. Member States must reassert the negative public health and negative consequences of drug use, and reaffirm our commitment to our joint obligations.’

 

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