2023 CND & CCPCJ Reconvened Session

Secretariat: Distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen, As many of you are aware, the term of Her Excellency Ambassador (…), who served as the chair of the CCPCJ 32nd session, concluded at the onset of this conference. On 17 November, the Secretariat received a note from the chair of the African region nominating His Excellency, the Ambassador of Morocco, to preside over the remaining part of the second session of the Commission. I hereby invite the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice to elect His Excellency, the Ambassador of Morocco, as the Chair for the remainder of the 32nd session. If there are no objections, it is so decided.

Chair: Thanks. As per the Economic and Social Council decision 2011/259, our meeting today will be held jointly with the Commission on Narcotic Drugs and reconvene the 60th session. The joint meeting will be chaired by His Excellency, my esteemed colleague from Colombia, the Chair of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs. I would like to address a few organizational matters. Organizational arrangements have been adopted by silence procedure on 9 November 2023. The session is conducted in a hybrid format, with interpretation into six official languages available for speakers participating online for a total duration of 30 minutes during each meeting. If more speakers request the floor online after the allotted 30 minutes, they will be given the floor in the next meeting. Moving on to the adoption of the agenda and other organizational items, let us consider the provisional agenda for this session. The annotated agenda and the proposed organization of work are detailed in document CCBP/CJ/2024/1/1. The session will address Title IV, pertaining to strategic management and budgetary administration questions, as a joint meeting with the Commission on any outstanding election for the Food and Agriculture Organization for 2023. If time permits, discussions on other matters may also be opened. Agenda Item 9 on the federal agenda will remain open, and deliberations will continue during a separate meeting tomorrow. Action under Item 4 will be taken by the Commission in the respective separate meeting tomorrow. Agenda Item 6 will see CCPC taking action on the illumination of candidates for membership on the board of trustees of the United Nations International Crime and Justice Research Institute. Information is available in document CCBP/CJ/2024/14. Updates on the follow-up of the 14th Crime Congress and preparations for the 15th Crime Congress will be provided under Item 9. Discussions on CCPC’s contribution to ECOSOC’s work and preparations for the next session will be covered under Agenda Item 10. Agenda Item 11 and other business will conclude with the adoption of the report of the Cabinet’s reconvened 32nd session. Following this, the 33rd session will be opened for the sole purpose of electing the Bureau of the Commission, in accordance with ECOSOC resolution 22/31 and Rule 5 of the Rules of Procedure of the Functional Commission. Can we agree on the proposed organization of work for the Cabinet 32nd session as contained in document CCBP/CJ/2024/1/1? I see no objections. Thank you.

co-Chair:  Thank you very much, and congratulations on the successful commencement of this meeting, Excellencies, distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen. Good morning, and welcome to the 66th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs. I will now direct your attention to the agenda for the recommended 66th session, as outlined in document CN.721. According to the proposed program of work, today, we will jointly consider Agenda Item 4 on strategic management and any outstanding elections for the Bureau for 2023. Action on this item will be deferred to a meeting tomorrow from 10 am to 1 pm. As Ambassador [Name] has indicated, we will open Agenda Item 9 on ECOSOC matters later today to discuss topics of joint interest, and the committee will continue with Agenda Item 5 on the implementation of the international drug control treaties. Tomorrow, we will deliberate further on Agenda Item 9, addressing motivation, regional issues, and Agenda Item 10 on preparation for the midterm review, along with the provisional agenda for the next session (Agenda Items 11, 12). Finally, we will close the 66th session by adopting the report. Following this, the 67th session will be opened for the selection of its Bureau. Our proposed program of work for this session is comprehensive, with a focus on strategic management and budgetary initiatives. We will delve into the work of the standing open-ended intergovernmental working group on improving the governance of UNODC, as well as directives on policy and budgetary issues for the UN crime prevention and criminal justice program. Let’s proceed to Agenda Item 4 for strategic management and budgetary initiatives.

Chair:  Thank you. Now, we will cover all sub-items together for efficient use of our time. Please indicate the items covered in your statements. Any comments or questions? None observed. The Commissions will jointly consider the consolidated budget for the biennium for the UNODC, as outlined in the Report of the Executive Director (document CNN.723/ECN.15). Additionally, a conference room paper on the draft proposed floor plan for the 2025 program performance for UNODC is under consideration (document CN.7/ECN.15/CRP.9). Tomorrow, the CND is expected to elect members and formally adopt the draft resolution on the budget for the United Nations International for 2024-2025. The Commission will address the requirements on gender balance and geographical representation within UNODC. Now, I pass the floor back to you for any useful information. Additionally, I’d like to note that in the CCPC separate meeting tomorrow afternoon, the election of Bureau members for 2024 and formal action on the draft resolution for the budget for 2024-2025 will be conducted. I now invite the management of UNODC to introduce the consolidated budget for the biennium 2024-2025. Excellencies, Distinguished Delegates, the consolidated budget for 2024-2025 for UNODC (document CN.7/2023/70) is presented, with additional insights from the report of the Advisory Committee on administrative and budgetary questions (document EC.7/2023/40/ECN.23). Despite global challenges, UNODC is projected to deliver programs at $734.2 million, a 6% increase from the previous biennium. The program support cost budget is proposed at $67.9 million, reflecting a $14.2 million increase, and aims to enhance the organization’s network, deliver corporate functions, and align with the Secretary-General’s reform efforts. The general-purpose budget increases to $9.2 million, based on a projected income of $9.4 million. Commitment to the United Nations Development System, gender diversity, and geographical representation remains a priority. The Annual Report of the Executive Director provides detailed information on gender and geographical representation efforts. Ensuring a healthy workforce and a supportive work environment are emphasized, along with maintaining a victim-centered approach and promoting a safe and inclusive culture. Thank you for your attention, and we are prepared to address any comments or questions.

Speaker: I would like to update you that since January 20, the Working Group has conducted four regular meetings, three rounds of informal consultations, and engaged in a dialogue on the resolution. A note by the Secretariat detailing the Working Group’s progress is available for your consideration. Additionally, I’d like to inform you that following the departure of His Excellency from Costa Rica, the Latin American and Caribbean States have nominated Vietnam (?) and Mexico as co-anchors. Can the Commission on Narcotic Drugs endorse these nominations? No comments or objections were noted. Congratulations and best wishes.

Chair: Can the Commission on crime prevention and criminal justice also endorsed these nominations? Great.

FINGOV: Your Excellency, I am pleased to provide you with an update on the work of the standard open-ended intergovernmental working group focused on enhancing the governance and financial situation of UNODC. Details of the working group’s activities are outlined in document ECOSOC/UNODC/2023/1. Over the covered period, the working group conducted three regular meetings addressing a wide array of issues related to the governance and financial standing of the office. A noteworthy meeting was held on September 17, where the working group discussed the status of the implementation of the strategy to enhance the organization’s effectiveness, particularly focusing on multilingualism within intergovernmental reports, the consolidated budget for 2024-2025, the UNODC drug program plan for 2025, program performance for 2023, and Human Resources evaluation. The working group received comprehensive updates on UNODC’s work in Europe, Western and Central Asia, and the Pacific. Insights were provided on the office’s efforts related to research, gender mainstreaming, and civil society engagement regarding post-content issues. Following the working group’s consultations on November 2, 9, and 10, 2023, concerning draft resolutions contained in the Executive Director’s report on the consultative budget for 2024-2025, a considerable number of delegations actively participated, and I extend my gratitude to Member States for their engagement. Special thanks are also due to the Secretariat for supporting the working group during this period. An informal note on the format and content of regular routines was circulated on November 2, incorporating responses from member states received by the deadline in September. Based on these responses and feedback, a set of follow-up actions for the conduct of future working group meetings was developed and circulated among Member States on November 2. I would like to express appreciation to all working group members for their crucial role, and I am confident that the group will continue to play a vital role in enhancing the transparency and accountability of UNODC. I encourage member states to stay actively involved in these proceedings. Thank you.

Chair: Now I open the floor for comments from member states. on agenda item four. Let me remind delegations that interventions on behalf are regional groups are limited to five minutes or three minutes.

Pakistan on behalf of the Group of 77 and China:  Distinguished Co-Chairs and colleagues, good morning. Speaking on behalf of the Group of 77 and China during this reconvened session of CCPCJ and CND, we appreciate Ambassador McGill Camilla’s leadership and welcome the facilitators for their guidance. Special thanks to Ambassador Marie of Kenya for chairing the 32nd session of CCPCJ. We commend the Commission’s Secretariat for timely session preparation and document submissions. Our group values member states’ initiatives, including resolutions, contributing to both commissions. Emphasizing the standing open-ended intergovernmental working group, we underscore its role as a vital forum for dialogue. We recognize Ambassador Filbert Abarca Johnson’s efforts and welcome him as the Incoming Chair of the 67th session. Acknowledging the importance of high-level engagement, we call for the executive director’s annual meetings, fostering dynamic responsiveness. Encouraging the continuation of this practice, we stress the importance of improving and expanding UNODC’s programs and projects in developing countries. Discouraging election-related sanctions, we seek a consolidated budget that is transparent, accessible, and inclusive. Expressing concern about earmarked contributions hindering strategic management, corporate oversight, and program launch, we call for increased contributions to the general purpose fund, emphasizing non-discrimination. Stressing sustainable funding for UNODC’s effective assistance, we highlight the need for efficient resource utilization. We request the executive director to enhance gender participation, fostering balance and parity, while improving developing country representation in line with GA resolution. The Group urges reporting on progress during upcoming meetings, including the joint reconvened sessions in 2020. Our statements will be available online. Thank you.

EU: Good morning, Co-Chairs, and esteemed colleagues. I am honored to address you on behalf of the European Union and its member states, covering all four subjects under consideration for this agenda item. Despite the global challenges of increasing turmoil and instability, the UNODC has demonstrated resilience and effectiveness in delivering technical support to combat organized crime. The European Union, alongside its member states, remains a strong supporter and a major donor for UNODC’s invaluable work. We commend UNODC’s strategic orientation, emphasizing an integrated and holistic approach to its technical cooperation program on drugs and crime. In alignment with the international community’s commitment, as reaffirmed in the 2021 Kyoto Crime Congress declaration, we endorse UNODC’s efforts to strengthen member states’ capacities in preventing and addressing crimes impacting the environment. I would like to highlight a specific focus area within our program – migrant smuggling. This multibillion-euro enterprise results in numerous deaths annually. Recently, the European Commission organized an international conference against migrant smuggling, where UNODC played a crucial role. We support the global alliance for migrant smuggling, urging governments to implement protocols, where UNODC’s role is vital in data collection, joint enforcement operations, capacity building, judicial cooperation, and addressing smuggling networks. Emphasizing the importance of civil society organizations’ participation in UNODC activities, we welcome efforts promoting gender equality, human rights, child protection, and youth empowerment. The European Union expresses its support for UNODC’s work and thanks Ambassador Johnson of Ghana for his leadership in advancing the role of the intergovernmental working group. We hope future meetings will build upon recent survey results to enhance its effectiveness. In conclusion, we reiterate our commitment to UNODC’s efforts in combating crime and drugs, commending their dedication to this critical work. Thank you.

USA: Thank you, Mr. Chair. It’s a pleasure to acknowledge the distinguished ambassadors from Colombia and Morocco, who are leading the session. The United States commends UNODC for its exceptional work in addressing global challenges related to drugs, crime, corruption, and terrorism. As one of UNODC’s largest donors, we appreciate the impactful assistance provided through its regional, country, and thematic programs. We welcome the report on UNODC’s consolidated budget for 2023-24 and commend its efforts to enhance transparency and consult with member states on funding models. We express support for UNODC’s focus on improving overall management practices and fostering a culture of evaluation. The United States stands behind UNODC’s commitment to gender equality, balance, and geographical representation. Emphasizing merit-based selections, we encourage the implementation of strategies outlined in the comprehensive diversity, recruitment, and workforce planning. We applaud the Secretariat’s report on gender balance and geographical representation, emphasizing the importance of implementing the comprehensive strategy for gender parity. Finally, the United States appreciates UNODC’s initiatives to leverage technology for inclusive and accessible meetings and programs. Thank you.

Japan: On behalf of the Japanese government, I extend our appreciation for the hard work in organizing this joint meeting. Recognizing UNODC’s mission to promote the rule of law as the foundation of international order, Japan appreciates its collaboration on key actions. Acknowledging UNODC’s significant contribution to the 2030 Agenda, Japan emphasizes the importance of transparency, accountability, and a flexible approach to address financial challenges. Japan commends UNODC’s efforts to explore creative problem-solving and innovative funding models. While supporting equitable geographical representation, Japan urges further consideration of the geographical context. In conclusion, Japan reiterates its commitment to supporting UNODC financially and constructively engaging in its activities. Thank you.

Kenya:  The challenges posed by drug trafficking and abuse are a serious threat to national security, safety, environment, and the general welfare, particularly affecting children and women. We commend the efforts of the Open-ended Intergovernmental Working Group in enhancing the governance and financial situation of UNODC, facilitating the effective discharge of its treaty-mandated functions. Kenya has greatly benefited from UNODC’s support, particularly in developing National CLAS Standards, implementing interventions like opioid substitution therapy, harm reduction, and addiction treatment. Recognizing the milestone achievements, we encourage continued engagement at national, regional, and international levels. We note the WHO report on commercial bromazepam and other products and commit to readiness for the 67th session of the commission in 2024. Appreciating the report on the high-level segment, we affirm our commitment to countering the world drug problem in line with national conventions on drug control. We call on UNODC to continue engaging member states on thematic issues, emphasizing the importance of international collaboration and engagement with stakeholders, including civil society organizations. Thank you for the floor. I submit.

Sweden: Sweden, in alignment with the European Union’s statement, expresses appreciation to the Commission on Drugs and Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice. We commend for successfully chairing in a challenging global environment. UNODC’s mandate remains highly relevant, and we acknowledge its strategic framework and consolidated budget for 2024-2025. While financial challenges persist, we emphasize the need for flexible earmarked funding to address future challenges effectively. Coordination with the entire UN system, civil society involvement, and gender equality efforts within UNODC are crucial. We call on member states to secure core funding for key functions and applaud progress in gender equality. Sweden remains committed to partnering with UNODC in addressing global challenges. We appreciate Executive Director Ghada Wali’s strong leadership and dedication to gender equality, along with the entire UNODC staff’s invaluable contributions. Thank you.

Egypt: Aligned with the Group of 77’s statement, Egypt offers the following remarks in its national capacity regarding the consolidated budget overview of UNODC for 2024-2025. We fully support the proposed budget as it addresses the mandate of UNODC in a balanced manner. Egypt appreciates the increase in voluntary contributions and encourages partners to allocate a significant portion of these contributions, providing more flexibility in meeting the diverse needs of member states. We urge exploration of innovative, sustainable, and predictable funding sources. Furthermore, Egypt recommends increased engagement during meetings and encourages regular reporting on UNODC activities and programs at the quarterly level, both on a bilateral and global scale. We emphasize the importance of impartial publications respecting the cultural diversity of member states and aligning with relevant UN resolutions. Regarding ongoing programs and activities, Egypt values the current cooperation with UNODC, especially in combating migrant smuggling, addressing drug problems, preventing corruption, and countering trafficking in persons. We seek to enhance cooperation and explore new avenues. Egypt is confident that UNODC can increase efforts in international cooperation to counter illicit financial flows, combat illicit trafficking of cultural property, address the drug problem comprehensively, and collaborate with other international organizations to tackle root causes of migrant smuggling and trafficking in persons. Before concluding, we highlight the urgent need to address the crimes against innocent civilians in the Gaza Strip. The recent Israeli aggression has led to significant casualties, and Egypt calls upon the international community to stop the aggression, ensure an immediate and sustainable ceasefire, and provide civilians access to basic needs. Egypt supports the aspirations of the Palestinian people for an independent state in line with UN Security Council resolutions. We express our gratitude to the Ambassadors of Colombia and Morocco for their joint leadership of the two Commissions. Our sympathies are extended to the Palestinian people in the face of recent tragic events. The international community must take urgent collective action against terrorism and criminal acts that violate fundamental principles of the UN Charter, international law, and humanitarian principles.

Iran: We align ourselves with the statement delivered by His Excellency Ambassador of Pakistan on behalf of the 77th and China. We would like to contribute the following comments in our national capacity: Evaluation serves as a valuable vehicle for consultation and communication between member states and the Secretariat on matters related to the working group. We note concerns about the challenges stemming from the shortfall in general-purpose funding and underlying trends affecting the independent functioning of core programmatic functions. The Islamic Republic of Iran underscores the significance of ensuring adequate, foreseeable, and unwavering funding for UNODC, emphasizing its role in providing technical assistance and capacity to developing countries. We believe that programs should target specific results, considering domestic laws, regulations, priorities, and challenges in relevant areas. Addressing the lack of adequate funding for concrete projects and training officers is crucial to fulfilling the mandate and assisting members. Efforts are needed to ensure the allocation of sufficient financial and logistical resources. We strongly believe that international cooperation is a fundamental principle in all relevant activities. Emphasizing the vital role of national corporations, we recognize that liberal member states face challenges undermining capacities to combat drugs and crimes. The Islamic Republic of Iran stresses the crucial importance of addressing challenges that undermine the country’s international obligations. Despite unfair and politicized measures, we have defended the international community’s interests. We emphasize that neighboring countries should not face the challenge alone and call for regional cooperation, urging support and adequate funding. Human resources, real estate, and firm positions are crucial aspects in addressing these challenges. Effective endeavors are needed to increase the representation of developing countries in the staff composition of the office. Therefore, the Secretariat is requested to ensure equivalent geographic representation in reports to the Commissions. We also call for continued efforts to evaluate the progress made by the station from developing countries to researchers.

Pakistan: Pakistan emphasizes its commitment to a robust and comprehensive framework addressing illicit drugs while balancing supply and demand reduction. This framework prioritizes regional and international cooperation, respecting human rights, with a special focus on women and children. Despite resource constraints, Pakistan remains steadfast in addressing the world’s drug problem. Notably, Project (…) addresses 80% of global opium production, making Pakistan the second-largest origin for cannabis. While the imposition of National Bank conditions is a welcome step, the alarming rise of meth production poses additional challenges. Crucially, Pakistan highlights the asymmetry in UNODC’s portfolio for Western Central Asia, receiving only 4.6% of the total budget. Given recent developments, attention is drawn to the need for increased contributions, emphasizing predictable and flexible funding. Member states are encouraged to allocate resources proportionate to challenges faced by regions, aligning priorities with UNODC and donors. We would also like to addresses the international community’s conclusion that Israel committed war crimes against the Palestinian people. Strong condemnation is expressed for Israel’s indiscriminate use of force, attacks on civilians, and violations of international humanitarian law. The Commission calls for a rights-based approach to drug policy, urging the international community to initiate results-oriented negotiations. Finally, the Commission commits to further action on reported crimes and incidents in future meetings.

Morocco: We appreciate the implementation of the UNODC strategy 2021-2025, providing optimal strategic direction based on a people-centered approach. We also anticipate the execution of the Strategic Vision for Africa 2030 to complement the existing strategy. Our delegation fully supports the extension of the open-ended intergovernmental Working Group, actively engaging in efforts to enhance governance and the financial situation of the UNODC. However, we wish to express the following remarks: Morocco emphasizes the need for restructuring the funding model of the NDC as a top priority to ensure more flexible and effective use of funding, promoting agility and purpose. Adequate, predictable, and stable funding for the UN DC is deemed crucial to sustaining the provision of technical assistance and capacity building to member states based on requests and priorities. Morocco urges the NDC to intensify efforts in broadening the donor base and exploring innovative resource mobilization methods for additional funds. We invite international donors to continue providing adequate general purpose contributions, particularly flexible and voluntary contributions. Our delegation calls upon the ODC to strengthen recruitment efforts on a wide geographical basis, in accordance with Article 101 of the Charter of the United Nations. We emphasize the importance of continuous updates to member states on measures taken to enhance equitable staff distribution and ensure gender parity. In conclusion, the Kingdom of Morocco remains committed to collaborating with the UN ODC and fellow member states to address threats and crimes at all levels.

UK: Financial transparency, stability, and efficiency are crucial for the credibility of UNFCCC, and we appreciate the time spent discussing the budget today. The UK would like to focus on two points. Firstly, the Omnibus Crime resolution introduced by the UK emphasizes the use of the latest Human Resources tools to maintain a dynamic and expert workforce. We expect this topic to be given sufficient time during future discussions. Secondly, the UK stresses the need for transparency around regrading staff positions, expecting alignment with EU and ADC strategy. The UK hopes for more scope to discuss staffing issues and to share its international network experience. Thank you.

Russia: The Russian Federation wholeheartedly supports global efforts against transnational organized crime, corruption, and terrorism. As an important partner and donor, Russia has contributed $2 million, funding various projects in Central Asia, Pakistan, and Iran. The focus is on combating corruption, piracy, and drug use prevention. Russia emphasizes the officers and prosecutors serving the interests of all states without politicization. Concerns include reducing dependency on extra-budgetary funding and addressing workforce problems. Russia advocates for equal access to resources and emphasizes the importance of impartiality, transparency, and reliability in research activities. The Russian Federation urges adherence to multilingualism, gender balance, and a balanced approach toward SDGs, recognizing the universal mandate derived from UN conventions.

Jordan: Jordan aligns itself with the statement delivered by His Excellency Ambassador of Pakistan on behalf of g7. I would like to make the statement in my national capacity. Esteemed colleagues, the Commission on crime prevention’s purpose is to prevent crime, but the current situation depriving people of water, medicine, and electricity is a severe violation of justice. The attacks have escalated to new levels, prompting the Secretary-General to invoke Article 99 of the charter. Jordan condemns illegal settlements and calls for a political solution for lasting peace. Jordan supports UNODC’s efforts, emphasizing geographical representation and women’s participation.

China: China aligns with Pakistan’s statement and appreciates UNODC’s efforts. China has cooperated with UNODC in various areas, achieving fruitful results. Addressing rising drug-related harms, China will increase annual contributions to UNODC, focusing on priority areas. China supports UNODC’s strategy and regional program, expecting a greater role in Southeast Asia. China urges international focus on drug issues in the region. Noting gender balance improvements, China emphasizes geographical diversity, expecting UNODC to take more initiatives. China thanks the Secretariat and aligns with Pakistan’s statement on behalf of the G77.

Colombia:  The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) must have sufficient, predictable, and flexible funding to fully implement its programs and continue progressing in the implementation of the 2021-2025 strategy. Our dedication expresses concern about the ongoing imbalance between resources allocated for specific purposes and those assigned for general purposes. This challenge significantly hampers the office’s capacity to respond to overall priorities and fulfill its mandate. As one of the main contributors to the budget, Colombia values this bilateral relationship and recognizes the significant contribution of the UNODC in tackling organized transnational crime in Colombia and Latin America. Engaging in an interactive dialogue with the United Nations Resident Office, we are coordinating the terms for the UN Framework of Action for Sustainable Development in Colombia between now and 2027. The uncoordinated growth of the UN system has led to coordination difficulties among various program agencies, exacerbated by a lack of transparency and accountability. Although progress has been made, challenges persist, particularly in a country like Colombia, undergoing a post-conflict phase. Upon agreement on the general strands of action for the framework for cooperation with the UN for sustainable development in Colombia, discussions with UNODC representatives will establish the country program for 2024-2028, incorporating accountability mechanisms for regular dialogue. Colombia supports the UNODC’s regional approach for Latin America and the Caribbean and its activities for the Andean region and Southern Cone, contributing to the 2030 agenda for sustainable development. Colombia reiterates support for funding reform, anticipating its impact on maximizing human and natural resources efficiently. Partnerships and close cooperation between UN entities are crucial. Gratitude is expressed to UNODC for its support, particularly regarding matters related to the alternative development program. Colombia encourages the program’s progression toward adopting an agro-industrial policy to broaden its impact, ensuring that sustainable development’s fundamental objectives are inclusive. Continued capacity development among Member States to prevent and combat crime affecting the environment, linked to other aspects of transnational crime, is essential. Colombia commits to supporting the exchange of information, enhancing dialogue, and accountability with UNODC. Emphasizing the implementation of the UNFCCC gender equality and empowerment of women strategy, Colombia underscores Article 117 of the UN Charter, highlighting the importance of hiring staff for the greatest selection, geographic representation. Colombia acknowledges the need for greater diversity in UNODC, particularly in Latin America and the Caribbean, and reaffirms its commitment to working collaboratively with member states and UNODC. Thank you for your attention.

Ecuador:  Today, we have gained valuable insights and received clear evidence from countries, regions, and various entities regarding indicators related to the countries most affected by the drug problem. We agree with countries emphasizing the need for the impact on countries to be an objective indicator linked to international cooperation. In Ecuador, our challenges are closely linked to drug trafficking and organized crime, including arms trafficking and environmental crime. The available data should contribute to the overall panorama, both multilaterally and regionally. We express gratitude to UNODC for the technical assistance provided to Ecuador. The 31st meeting of the heads of organizations combating illicit trafficking and drugs in Latin America and the Caribbean, held in Quito in October, allowed the region to jointly evaluate mechanisms to address the global drug phenomenon. We emphasize the importance of the strategic vision for Latin America and the Caribbean within UNODC. Ecuador welcomes the announcement of a UNODC field office in Quito, enhancing the organization’s presence and impact on the ground. Regarding gender, Ecuador underscores the cross-cutting nature of this issue and emphasizes the need to strengthen gender parity and equality at all management levels in UNODC. These are our main observations. Thank you very much.

Mexico:  Thank you, Chair, and colleagues. Mexico feels compelled to address a concerning and dangerous statement heard this morning, where one state claims the right to determine or invalidate decisions within the United Nations system. Commissions have established rules and procedures for the adoption of resolutions, as outlined in Article 60 of the rules of procedure of ECOSOC. Any attempt to influence UN bodies based on personal preferences goes against the UN Charter, particularly Article 18. Using this as a pretext to censor the secretariat violates Article 100 of the Charter, as member states are committed to refraining from influencing the secretariat. Such statements are fully unacceptable. In the context, we recall that the 1961 Convention was adopted through the exercise of the right to vote. The delegation’s position raises concerns about its acceptance of the 1961 convention and challenges the validity of decisions and resolutions adopted. Thank you.

Tunisia:  Tunisia aligns itself with the statement of the Group of 77 and China and would like to make remarks in its national capacity. Firstly, we express our appreciation for your fruitful efforts in guiding the Committee of Narcotic Drugs toward its objectives. Congratulations to Ambassador [Name] for chairing the CCP and thanks to the former president of the committee and Mr. Johnson for chairing the session. We take note of the Director General’s report on the consolidated budget and program for the next two years, urging member states and donor countries to provide more support to UNODC, especially given the escalating crises related to drugs, illegal immigration, terrorism, and transnational organized crime. We extend our support to Ms. Whaley, Executive Director of UNODC, and the Secretariat staff for their efforts in supporting member states. Appreciation is expressed for the cooperation between the UNODC offices in Vienna and Cairo, providing assistance to Tunisia and other members in combating these dangers. Additionally, we express concern for the suffering of Palestinians in Gaza due to aggression, calling for an immediate ceasefire and the restoration of their stolen rights, including the right to establish an independent state with Jerusalem as its capital. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

MS: Dear colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, I am pleased to address the assembly in our annual gathering. We face challenges to security, stability, and the fight against poverty, aiming to protect our democratic systems and institutions based on international laws and principles. Terrorist and criminal organizations exploit uncertainties and security gaps, continuing to spread violence and tension, utilizing technological advancements. The focus of today’s meeting is on draft criminal prevention and justice. I bring attention to two significant threats. First, the increase in traffic poses a massive threat to the Middle East and Gulf countries, with terrorists reportedly using this substance for attacks. The second concern is the orchestrated model of migration by criminal groups to destabilize regions, exemplified by mercenary groups. The secretariat is working on a communication campaign to raise awareness and coordinate legislative measures to prevent and address migrant smuggling. Thank you.

NGO Alliance:  I would like to deliver statements on behalf of two Viana-based umbrella organizations supporting the CCPCJ and CND – the NGO Committee and the alliance of NGOs of which I am the chair –  jointly include 500 members. Mr. Co-Chair, effective implementation of international standards and treaties requires close cooperation of all relevant stakeholders to promote inclusive, non-discriminatory, and gender-sensitive and responsive approaches. This necessitates the full participation and contribution of civil society in all relevant processes, including meetings of these conventions. We appreciate the efforts of the Commissions in ensuring the participation of civil society groups in its meetings, including throughout the intersessional period. We look forward to the continuation and consolidation of such multi-stakeholder engagements. As the CND midterm review takes place and the CCPCJ begins to look ahead to the upcoming Crime Congress in 2026, it is essential that such dialogue is maintained and even improved. Finally, we sincerely thank the Commission chairs, as well as the Secretariat of the CCPCJ and the CND, civil society member states, and other UNSC colleagues for their cooperation. We look forward to working with the CCPCJ to ensure that civil society voices are heard. Thank you very much for your attention.

Chair: Thank you very much. We have completed this item, and now we are moving into divisions by the Commission to the work of economic and social solutions 75 and 75 to 90 encoding follow-up to review as approved by distributor. This item is open during the joint session and will remain open until tomorrow. I now hand over to number 10 on the agenda of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, and I’m pleased to report on that  side events enhancing the work of the Commission and the Commission on Crime Prevention Controversial Justice event was organized with the United Nations in New York and enjoyed very good potential. Ambassador [Name] also contributed to the management segment, helpfully presenting work conducted during the session but also providing to the Declaration of Sustainable Development Goals.

Chair: Now, in accordance 45 for the rules of procedure, there is the possibility to try to reply and I see a number of requests to take the floor.

USA: Our anti-crime treaties encourage us to take measures to prevent corruption, terrorism, and organized crime, including gun trafficking and sanctions. These measures align with the UN Charter, as they are legitimate actions for national self-defense and no excuse to fail to implement treaty obligations. The United States greatly regrets that some delegations have chosen to use this meeting to make allegations beyond the competence of this forum. While previous statements addressed the situation in Gaza, they failed to mention the tragic events of October 7, where civilians were murdered, and over 200 hostages were taken in a barbaric attack, attributed to Hamas. US citizens, along with citizens from many other countries, are among the victims. The United States strongly supports Israel’s right to defend itself. We deplore any allegations of crimes against humanity and, like others, support a speedy and peaceful conclusion to the conflict, prioritizing the protection of civilians, including Palestinians.

Israel: Thank you, Chair.Well, there is much ground to cover. Our anti-crime treaties advocate for measures to prevent corruption, terrorism, and organized crime, including gun trafficking and sanctions. These measures should align with the UN Charter, constituting legitimate acts of national self-defense. However, they should not serve as excuses for neglecting treaty obligations. Previous statements addressed the situation in Gaza but failed to acknowledge the heinous attack by a terrorist group against Israel on October 7. This attack resulted in the tragic murder of civilians and the abduction of over 200 hostages, including US citizens and others from various nations. We condemn allegations of crimes against humanity but, like some others, advocate for a prompt and peaceful resolution to the conflict. Our stance prioritizes the protection of civilians.

Egypt: I wish to draw your attention to the statement delivered on behalf of the Group of 77 in China, which emphasized the importance of improving applications and publications with respect to the cultural diversity of member states, solely depending on languages in accordance with the relevant conceptual resolution. This was part of the communication delivered on behalf of the Group of 77 to China, not a simple individual statement. It raises questions about why there is no highlight on the need for impartiality and why respecting cultural diversity is not being emphasized. We believe this dedication should not be limited by what is exerted by others; diversity should be embraced, not imposed. Regarding the tragic situation in Gaza, we remain a fervent supporter of peace and stability in the region, calling for efforts to fulfill the aspirations of the Palestinian people. We urge all parties to work towards achieving this goal.

Iran: We would like to express our opposition to the baseless allegations made against the Islamic Republic of Iran which we firmly reject. These allegations aim to justify and cover up jealousy-driven aggression against innocent people. There is an evident attempt in the region to shift blame onto Iran, lacking any legal basis and considering it a means of disseminating unfounded allegations. We categorically deny any involvement in war crimes and crimes against humanity. Thank you.

Chair: Thank you everyone. With this, I adjourn our session. CCPCJ will resume at 3pm, CND tomorrow morning.

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