Home » 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.

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.


UNODC:  Thank you, Mr. Chair, distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen. It is my pleasure to brief the Commission on some of the significant efforts UNODC has undertaken over the last year to confront the global drug problem, in line with the Ministerial Declaration of 2019. Given time constraints, I will highlight just a few key initiatives. Our report on the global drug trafficking situation reveals that opium poppy cultivation saw a 26% increase in 2022 compared to the previous year, with heroin seizures totaling 112 tons in 2021, marking the second highest quantity reported to date. However, recent data from Afghanistan shows a remarkable 95% decrease in opium cultivation and production in 2023. Cocaine manufacturing reached unprecedented levels, with global seizures increasing by 42% to a new high of 2000 tons in 2021. Similarly, seizures of amphetamine-type stimulants nearly reached 600 tons for the second consecutive year. In our normative work, UNODC has continued to enrich the Drug Control Repository with over 1500 legislative entries from 190 countries, and introduced a new section on national drug control strategies. Additionally, the UNODC’s Shell Portal now includes 924 legislative entries from 157 countries related to drug-related offenses. Our Global Programme on Criminal Network Disruption has supported around 50 countries in mapping and disrupting criminal networks, facilitating 20 international cooperation requests in 2023. This program has enabled significant drug seizures, including 250 tons of cocaine, 1.5 tons of amphetamine, one ton of heroin, and substantial quantities of NPS and other opioids. Moreover, over 9000 criminal justice officials have been trained by the UNODC Global Maritime Crime Programme to address maritime crime challenges. The convergence of cybercrime and drug trafficking necessitates innovative approaches and enhanced collaboration, with our Global Programme on Cybercrime building capacities to counter online trafficking of synthetic drugs and their precursors. The Global Programme on Money Laundering has bolstered several Asset Recovery Inter-agency Networks, leading to significant asset seizures totaling over $144 million in 2023. The Commission has expressed concern about drug traffickers arming themselves, exacerbating societal violence. UNODC’s efforts in this area, including a recent event on the interlinkages between drug and firearm trafficking, demonstrate our commitment to addressing these intertwined challenges. These are just a few examples of how countries, supported by UNODC’s Global Programme, are working tirelessly across the globe. To conclude, I reaffirm our dedication to assisting member states in fulfilling the commitments outlined in the 2019 Ministerial Declaration. We rely on your ongoing support and cooperation, particularly in providing timely and comprehensive data on drug seizures and trends. I extend my gratitude to the 74 states and territories that responded to the supply reduction modules in 2023. Thank you.

CHAIR: The Floor is now open to member states

European Union (on behalf of EU): It is an honour to speak on behalf of the European Union and its member states, and the following countries align themselves with this statement: North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Albania, Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Iceland, Norway, Armenia, and Andorra. San Marino will be working now, Mr. Chair. We have already addressed this topic during the high-level segment, focusing both on what we have done so far and what we should do until 2029.  On behalf of the European Union, I would like to underline once again the need to continue the effective implementation of the commitments in the 2019 ministerial declaration, as well as the 2016 Congress outcome document, to address the world drug situation and to adjust our approaches when needed. This should be done in line with the international drug control conventions, which include concern about the health and welfare of humankind, and also with other relevant international instruments, particularly on human rights.  Facing the challenging drug situation in the world, including in the European Union, we will pursue an evidence-based, integrated, balanced, and multidisciplinary approach. We are determined to undertake further measures to address drug-related challenges in line with the EU Drug Strategy and Action Plan 2021-2025, focusing on drug demand reduction, reducing drug supply, and addressing drug-related harm. We will persist in promoting a human rights-centred approach in drug policies.  The EU will continue to support the active and meaningful participation and involvement of the scientific and expert community, civil society, including non-governmental organisations, young persons, women, affected communities, and people who use drugs, in shaping and implementing drug policies. We support the idea of intersessional meetings in the period until 2029 to be organised in an inclusive, transparent, and comprehensive manner so that all stakeholders can bring their valuable contributions to the debates.  When addressing challenges identified in 2019, we should acknowledge their evolving nature and bear in mind new developments and likely trends in the years to come. We must identify possible solutions such as minimising harms posed by new psychoactive substances, addressing poly-substance use, tackling new trafficking routes and methods, and addressing the environmental impact of illicit drug markets.  All our efforts to implement international drug policy commitments towards 2029 should align with our actions to promote the Sustainable Development Goals, including development-oriented drug policies and alternative development measures. This is of crucial importance as efforts to achieve the SDGs and to effectively address and counter the world drug situation are complementary and mutually reinforcing.  Distinguished Chair, the EU will continue to support the UNODC and focus our collective efforts in the next five years on accelerating the implementation of joint commitments at the national, regional, and international levels. Thank you, Mr. Chair.

South Africa: Thank you, Chairperson. South Africa is pleased to report that it has established 300 public treatment centres, as well as 13 public treatment centres countrywide, to increase affordability, availability, and accessibility to drug treatment services. All the treatment centres aim to provide both inpatient and outpatient treatment. South Africa is confident that these treatment services will reduce the negative health and social consequences associated with drug use. They are complemented by capacity-building programs, with over 400 practitioners trained on key elements of evidence-based prevention.  South Africa recognizes the central role awareness-raising plays in educating youth about the negative impact of drug use or disorder. We have successfully reached more than 75,000 students through prevention and intervention measures. Additionally, we are pleased to inform you of the recent launch of the Alcohol, Smoking, and Substance Involvement Screening Tool aimed at assisting with the early identification of substance use-related health risks and disorders in primary healthcare and other settings, including reintegration.  South Africa has also launched the first Gender Response Center for incarcerated women in December 2022, in line with our commitment to implement the United Nations Rules for the Treatment of Women Prisoners and Non-Custodial Measures for Women Offenders, also known as the Bangkok Rules, which complement the Nelson Mandela Rules.Furthermore, South Africa is pleased to report on regional and international cooperation efforts, which have resulted in successful drug seizures at our port authorities. We have also committed to addressing the confiscated proceeds of crime related to money laundering arising from drug trafficking. Our National Prosecuting Authority continues to prosecute and finalize drug trafficking cases. From April 2019 to January 2024, the NPA obtained a total of 525 forfeiture orders as part of removing profits from crime. Additionally, in 2023, 2.8 tonnes of cocaine trafficked via luxury yachts and fishing vessels were seized, sold at an auction, and the money was deposited into the Crime Asset Recovery Account.

Netherlands (Kingdom of the):  First of all, the Netherlands aligns itself with the statement made by the European Union earlier. Secondly, I would like to thank you for the opportunity to present a brief update on our broader offensive against organised and subversive crime and to highlight our pledge against this background. As a reminder, our offensive consists of four tracks: prevention, disruption, prosecution, and protection to meet the multiple challenges posed by criminal networks. In the Netherlands, where we are active in combating the illegal narcotics trade, a holistic approach is needed on several levels. Organised Crime often has a global reach, which makes international cooperation of the utmost importance.  On a national level, we make strong efforts to prevent the criminal recruitment of vulnerable youngsters, disrupt criminal networks and money flows, prosecute criminal offences, and protect potential victims. We are doing this with a broad variety of professionals from the public and private sectors – police officers, youth workers, teachers, judges, entrepreneurs, and public officials. Together, we are raising barriers against organised subversive crime. However, criminals adapt and are continuously looking for new ways to continue their illegal business. This means that we, too, must be adaptive. We must know what works and what doesn’t, evaluate our policies, and adapt them when needed. Our approach is long-term and needs widespread support from society as a whole, nationally and internationally.  Allow me to share some examples of our recent activities. To tackle the criminal business model, it is indispensable to reduce both the supply and demand for drugs. We have launched a nationwide pilot to analyse wastewater, giving us better insight into drug use patterns and points of engagement to reduce drug use. Many municipalities in the Netherlands want to set up interventions to prevent drug use, and they can be assisted by the integral model program for drugs policy. We are also boosting security in our main sea and airports, as well as our flower auctions, to reduce the entry and exit of drugs. This is being done through investments in personnel training, Smart Controls, and new technology.  The European coalition, comprising Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, and Spain, was set up to share best practices, exchange ideas and information, and prevent a waterbed effect when boosting our resilience and logistical hubs. In conclusion, prevention is key in tackling the challenges of drug abuse and organised crime. Thank you for your attention.

Czechia:   Czech Republic aligns itself with all statements delivered by the delegation of the European Union. Last week, the 2024 midterm review took place, and unfortunately, as we observed, a number of international commitments remain unfulfilled or even failing. We have unfortunately seen limited improvement over the years. The illicit market has been growing not only over the past 10 years. Criminal groups are growing wealthier, more sophisticated, and more creative, leading to growing suspicions that the drug trade is increasingly in the hands of top officials in different governments.  As an international community, we are confronted with the growing epidemic of overdose deaths due to synthetic drugs, with thousands of frail people dying every day. At the same time, wars in Europe and the Middle East exacerbate the flow of illicit funds, compromising fundamental security and leading to international terrorism or the creation of Narco states. Despite the substantial investment allocated to repression, the balloon effect continues to compromise the effects of current policies. The latest scientific evidence indicates that there is no direct correlation between the success of repressive operations and rates of drug use. This emphasises the need for our policies to be based on truly rational and realistic expectations.  Additionally, we know that policies focused on public health, those that promote prevention and reduce harms and risks, are indeed effective. Investing money and effort in such policies saves lives as well as public funds. Furthermore, we also have enough evidence that regulated markets and substituted markets with certain substances can often be more effective and safer than blanket prohibition.  Over the past four years, we have also seen an increase in awareness of the human rights impact of drug control systems, as well as a growing number of commitments, findings, and recommendations coming from UN agencies. In the ministerial declaration, member states recognize that responses that are not in agreement with international human rights obligations pose a challenge to the implementation of joint commitments. Historically, punitive drug policies have had their most severe impacts in a disproportionate manner across the globe. Although the world is unevenly affected by the drug situation, measures such as decriminalisation and depersonalization of drug use for personal use should be a key element to protect the health and basic human rights of the most vulnerable groups.  Furthermore, even countries with relatively good coverage of treatment and services for people who use drugs, such as the Czech Republic, often do not have the capacity to provide assistance at the scale they would like, and therefore, some care and treatment facilities are still missing. Given the dynamically changing global drug situation, as well as national and regional specificities, it is crucial to develop innovative interventions that are also gender and age-sensitive and that take into account the diverse needs of vulnerable groups, including people with disabilities or mental health comorbidities.  We must ensure increased availability and better funding for voluntary addiction-related treatment, including wide access to substitution treatment and other harm reduction measures. While there have been some local positive developments, evidence indicates that the current drug control system does not effectively respond to the evolving global drug situation.  Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to conclude that paradoxically shifting away from punitive and solely abstinence-oriented policies is crucial, and the sooner we take concrete action, the sooner we will be able to achieve not only some of the goals in the 2019 ministerial declaration but also those in the 2030 agenda. Thank you, ladies and gentlemen, for your attention.

Switzerland: Today, it is important to ensure that we do not lose sight of our work here in this forum, and that aim is the health and well-being of humankind. We will not attain a drug-free society by focusing on repressive aspects; rather, by protecting the health and well-being of our peoples. It is essential to ensure that we implement measures to protect the rights of persons who use drugs, whether that be the right to health, the right to life, prohibition of torture and inhuman or degrading penalties or treatments, as well as the right to privacy. In order to avoid collateral damage, we must equally ensure that drug use treatment is based on scientific evidence, that access is provided to this care and treatment on a voluntary basis, and that all persons who use drugs have easy access to risk reduction services. It is equally essential that we sustain efforts to guarantee access to controlled medication, making it possible to provide care and assistance for patients undergoing cancer care, palliative care, or in other situations of unbearable suffering. Finally, we must continue to combat the stigmatisation and discrimination that people who use drugs continue to suffer from, and we must equally take account of gender-related matters when designing our drug policies. It is only in doing so that we will be able to efficiently provide care to the persons who use drugs while ensuring their participation in and their support for measures to tackle this health challenge, while avoiding increasing the vulnerability of those who are the victims. To conclude, allow me equally to underscore the important role that civil society and academia play in our efforts. 

Greece: Your Excellency, esteemed delegates, dear colleagues, Greece is grateful for the opportunity to speak at the 67th regular session of the Commission on Narcotics. Aligned with the European Union statement and speaking from our national capacity, we affirm our commitment to a comprehensive, integrated, and compassionate approach in addressing the multifaceted challenges of drug use. Emphasising the principle of treatment and services for all, Greece highlights the necessity for collaborative efforts to ensure access to essential services for individuals, regardless of socio-economic status or other discriminatory factors.  We advocate for the development of programs that address not only addiction but also the root causes of substance use, including homelessness, hygiene, healthcare access, and poverty, promoting a holistic and people-centred approach to drug addiction. In our pursuit of enhancing public health, we urge the international community to prioritise and expand harm reduction services, recognizing their importance in mitigating the adverse consequences of drug use.  Greece supports increased backing for evidence-based harm reduction strategies, such as drug consumption rooms, street work, direct access to services through mobile units, and dedicated facilities for homeless drug users. These initiatives are crucial for minimising health risks, preventing the spread of infectious diseases, reducing the burden on healthcare systems, and mitigating criminal behaviours while reaching out to populations affected by addiction.  Furthermore, we call for a collective effort to destigmatize addiction, promoting a more compassionate community response to facilitate effective rehabilitation. Confronting and eradicating the stigma around substance use is vital in encouraging individuals with addictive behaviours to seek treatment and reintegration into society.  By understanding the socio-economic and psychological dimensions of addiction, we aim to challenge stereotypes and cultivate empathy within our societies. Addiction should be treated as a disease, with affected individuals receiving the care and support they need as patients. 

Canada: Thank you, Mr. Chair. As we have already stated before, Canada is in the midst of one of the most serious and deadly public health crises in our country’s history. The toxic and illegal drug and overdose crisis. On October 30 2023, Canada launched the renewed Canada, Canada Drugs and Substances strategy in keeping with Canada’s international obligations. The renewed strategy contains several initiatives that reflect the themes of both the 2019 ministerial Declaration and the 2016 UNGASS outcome document.   Canada’s drug policies are balanced, evidence based and compassionate, that take a gender perspective and prioritise human rights. We further strive to promote more equitable use services and to recognise the distinct impacts that substance use policies can have on marginalised communities. It is critical that we use all tools to minimise the harms associated with substance use, including stigma. Canada has taken many measures to address substance use stigma and continues to expand its work, including by supporting law enforcement by offering training to ways to raise awareness of substance use stigma, acknowledging their role as frontline service providers who frequently interact with people who use substances Canada also believes that substance controls are a key part of any comprehensive strategy to addressing substance related harms. Law enforcement and border control activities focused on addressing the production and trafficking of controlled substances. Our law and border enforcement agencies continue to work with domestic and international partners to strengthen drug interdiction approaches within Canada and at our borders, including through new and emerging technologies. In closing, Canada will continue our balanced approach based on prevention, treatment, recovery, harm reduction, and substance use control measures. And support the commitments as outlined in the 2019 ministerial declaration while upholding human rights.   Requesting members to design a comprehensive and well balanced strategy to combat the world drugs problem in keeping with the three international drug control treaties, as well as other relevant instruments of the United Nations.   We shall continue to work in close cooperation with the Commission and with our international partners, Police Services law and order as well as with civil society and individuals with experience in this area in order to gear our approaches to tackle illegal supply of drugs and overdose. crises.

Thailand:  Thank you for the opportunity to speak on behalf of Thailand. We express our gratitude to the Chair for organising this important session. The global community continues to face significant challenges from the illicit production and trafficking of drugs. Following the recent session on the drafting process for the 2024 midterm review outcome document, we applaud the progress made by Member States. It’s critical to emphasise the importance of cooperation at all levels, including data collection and analysis, technological innovation, capacity building, and resource mobilisation.  Thailand reaffirms its commitment to effectively address the world drug problem, ensuring the safety and well-being of people. We uphold the principle of shared responsibility. It’s evident that we must work diligently to bridge gaps and enhance the capacity among Member States. We aim to mobilise new networks with stakeholders to address the expanding drug market, the demand, and the non-medical use of psychoactive substances, especially among youth. Closer collaboration with the  WHO and INCB is vital to promptly respond to the diversification of narcotic drugs, particularly new synthetic substances. We must be prepared for rapid and profound changes in disruptive technologies and unite to counter the rise of these relentless challenges.  In conclusion, Thailand believes in addressing the world drug problem through practical measures and by listening to the needs of the people. We are committed to supporting cooperation on alternative development as a core strategy. We believe that alternative development can address not only the issue of illicit drug cultivation but also broader socio-economic challenges in affected settings. Thank you, Mr. Chair.

China:  Chair and delegates, in alignment with the 2019 Ministerial Declaration, China has embraced a comprehensive, integrated, and balanced approach to drug policy, reflecting international commitments. Over the past year, significant strides have been made in demand reduction through the launch of a national anti-drug awareness campaign, enriching the public, especially homes, with knowledge on new psychoactive substances.   To further this endeavour, China has championed the normalisation of community drug treatment and rehabilitation. This involves bolstering the professional capacity of anti-drug social workers and offering robust services to drug users undergoing rehabilitation. Efforts to enhance the operational capacity of treatment practitioners remain a priority, alongside the provision of methadone maintenance treatment services aimed at minimising drug use harm, including HIV/AIDS.  On the supply reduction front, China is determined to curb drug inflow from abroad, establishing comprehensive drug detection mechanisms. The past year witnessed the dismantling of significant drug trafficking networks, a crackdown on internet and logistics-based drug-related crimes, and stringent control over such illicit activities.  Promoting alternative development in regions like Laos and Myanmar is crucial to our strategy, where substantial progress has been achieved in project areas. This commitment to practical multilateral and bilateral international cooperation extends to information exchange with various countries. China pledges to continue supporting the principle of shared responsibility and win-win cooperation, urging all nations to collectively tackle challenges, particularly those posed by synthetic drugs. We anticipate that the CND and UNODC will persist in offering member states essential technical assistance and training in prevention, treatment, rehabilitation, online drug crime combat, and anti-money laundering measures, thereby accelerating the implementation of international drug control policies. Thank you.

Pakistan:  The 2019 Ministerial Declaration significantly bolstered the international commitment to jointly tackle the multifaceted, persistent, and evolving challenges of the world drug problem. This declaration reasserted our collective commitment to international cooperation, providing renewed political momentum to global efforts against drug issues. During the ongoing discussions, Pakistan emphasises the significance of the midterm outcome document and the discussions at the high-level segment, viewing them as vital roadmaps for future actions and guiding our combined efforts to effectively address and counter the world drug problem. This political message is unequivocal in its call for intensified efforts at national, regional, and international levels to accelerate the fulfilment of our joint commitments. Since the Ministerial Declaration’s adoption, Pakistan has actively pursued various initiatives to meet its obligations and contribute to the collective effort against the world drug problem. This includes legislative actions, the formulation of a national anti-narcotics policy, the establishment of coordinating mechanisms at appropriate levels, and maintaining a poppy-free status since 2001, despite facing significant social, political, economic, and security challenges. Our comprehensive approach spans drug law enforcement, drug demand reduction, judicial and international cooperation, treatment and rehabilitation, and ensuring access to controlled substances for medical and scientific purposes. We also prioritise addressing the specific needs of women, youth, and children in our drug policies. Recognizing the importance of international cooperation in tackling the complex issues surrounding the world drug problem, Pakistan has actively engaged in information and intelligence sharing, operational coordination, and mutual legal assistance with international partners, UNODC, and other relevant organisations. Furthermore, there’s a pressing need to enhance international cooperation based on shared responsibility, including boosting the technical capacity of the most affected countries to tackle the drug problem more effectively. While the challenges identified in the 2019 Declaration persist and have even expanded, new challenges have also emerged. The Declaration provides clear guidance for member states and the commission to address both enduring and new threats. Leveraging our collective efforts and lessons learned over the past decade, following the 2019 Declaration, we must reinforce a comprehensive, balanced, integrated, and evidence-based approach to the world drug problem.Pakistan reiterates its commitment to scaling up its counter-narcotics efforts to effectively implement all international drug policy commitments. Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Republic of Korea: I’m representing the Korea Customs Service and would like to discuss the topic from the customs perspective, particularly the impact of drug smuggling, which has become increasingly serious since COVID-19. In 2022, the Korean government declared a year of intensified efforts to counter illicit drugs, recognizing that the majority of drugs are smuggled from abroad. Thus, customs play a crucial role in blocking cross-border drug movement, emphasising that drug trafficking is not just a single country’s problem but a collective challenge for the Asia-Pacific region and the global community.  Acknowledging this, the Korea Customs Service (KCS) has been actively engaging in international cooperation platforms for drug enforcement. In 2023, KCS hosted the Korea Customs Week, attracting nearly 7,700 participants from 78 countries to discuss global cooperation themes. A joint statement on customs cooperation on Narcotics Control in the Asia and Pacific region was endorsed by 18 countries, marking a step towards intensifying regional cooperation on drug enforcement.  Besides multilateral initiatives, KCS has also engaged in bilateral cooperation with several countries. Notable operations include the Ran initiative with Thailand in 2022, marking a successful instance of bilateral cooperation where KCS officers worked alongside Thai customs, sharing real-time information. In 2023, KCS launched anti-drug operations with the Netherlands and Vietnam, and Germany actively cooperated in sharing information and undertaking international control delivery operations. For instance, KCS intercepted 2.9 kilograms of ketamine through international controlled delivery last year, leading to the apprehension of smugglers within Korea.  The United States, particularly HSI and CBP based in Korea, have long collaborated closely with KCS, leading to several successful international control deliveries. Additionally, Malaysia and Cambodia, when a sudden increase in drug smuggling was noticed, extended exceptional cooperation by intensifying local measures and comprehensive inspections for passengers bound for Korea.  I would like to express my gratitude to delegates from these countries for their partnership and support. While continuing to maintain close relations with existing partners, KCS seeks to develop international cooperation further, not limited to the mentioned countries. We look forward to new avenues of cooperation. Thank you for your attention.

United States of America: Addressing the synthetic drug threat remains a paramount challenge, necessitating global solutions. The United States emphasises the importance of the balanced approach highlighted in the 2019 CND Ministerial Declaration and remains committed to fulfilling the ten-year plan outlined until 2029. The declaration identified synthetic drug threats as a critical priority, an issue that has only grown more urgent, as evidenced by the participation of 149 countries and 13 international organisations in the Global Coalition to Address Synthetic Drug Threats.  The U.S. is not just focusing on this issue within the Coalition or through domestic frameworks. Efforts are underway to advance prevention, harm reduction, treatment, and recovery support initiatives to mitigate the public health risks of opioids and other substances. Collaboration with UNODC and other entities aims to enhance the quality of treatment services globally, sharing best practices for treating individuals with mental health and substance use disorders, particularly those involved with the criminal justice system.  Supply reduction efforts are bolstered through partnerships with UN entities like UNODC and INCB, building law enforcement capacity globally to disrupt drug traffickers’ activities. As actions against synthetic drug threats continue, leveraging multilateral cooperation, especially through the CND, is crucial. Achieving consensus on all issues is challenging, but necessary discussions and commitments here can drive impactful change. The Global Coalition underscores the shared priority of addressing synthetic drug problems across nations.  The increasing inadequacy of drug treatment and health services, alongside the rise in drug-related deaths, notably from overdoses, underscores the need for further international action. The WHO estimates that over 125,000 people die worldwide due to drug overdoses annually. The United States has seen a 50% increase in fatal overdoses between 2019 and 2022, suggesting a similar global trend due to the proliferation of potent synthetic drugs.  To combat this, the United States is sponsoring a resolution on preventing and responding to drug overdoses through evidence-based services, acknowledging that overdoses from substances like methamphetamine, synthetic cannabinoids, and others are also on the rise globally. This resolution aims to expand access to tools for preventing and responding to overdoses holistically.  UNODC’s support through its synthetic drug strategy, comprising innovative technical assistance and programming interventions, is critical. The U.S. has contributed over $7 million to this strategy, which, along with the INCB and WHO, developed the toolkit on synthetic drugs. This toolkit, launched in 2019, has seen widespread engagement, illustrating its value in guiding national actions against synthetic drug threats. The INCB’s role, especially through initiatives like the Global Rapid Interdiction of Dangerous Substances program, is vital in providing guidance to tackle emerging drug control challenges, such as uncontrolled precursor chemicals and the rapid emergence of new psychoactive substances. The increased information sharing through IONICS by the U.S. by 350% in 2022 exemplifies the importance of international cooperation in disrupting trafficking networks. The United States urges further support and effective use of these tools to enhance our collective efforts against the trafficking of synthetic drugs and precursor chemicals.

United Republic of Tanzania: Thank you, Mr. Chair, distinguished delegates. Tanzania has continued to implement national, regional, and international commitments as reflected in the Ministerial Declaration of 2019 to address and counter the drug problem by enacting the 2015 Drug Control and Enforcement Act, which encompasses drug supply reduction, demand reduction, harm reduction, as well as enhancement of national, regional, and international cooperation in addressing and countering the drug program.  Consequently, Tanzania has undertaken the following actions: Firstly, Tanzania continued to tackle the drug supply chain by apprehending individuals involved in drug business. Between June 2022 and December 2023, Tanzania has seized a total of 1755 tonnes of cannabis, 202 tonnes of khat, 4800 kilograms of heroin, and 40 kilograms of cocaine. Additionally, we have confiscated the importation of some 300,000 kilograms and 305,000 litres of precursor chemicals. Furthermore, from 2021, a total of 2400 kilograms of methamphetamine were seized in the country.  Secondly, Tanzania is focusing on drug demand reduction measures, including conducting mass awareness campaigns, special programs targeting vulnerable groups which are at more risk of using and trafficking drugs, and addressing the fight against drugs from the National Forum, as well as the establishment of anti-drug clubs in primary and secondary schools, colleges, as well as higher learning institutions.  Tanzania is focusing on scaling up harm reduction interventions for drug addicts by scaling up the provision of psychoeducation, medical-assisted therapy, detoxification services, rehabilitation programs, and offering drug dependency treatment to people with drug addiction through mental health and substance use units. A total of 854,134 individuals with various drug use conditions were treated. There are 16 operational medical-assisted therapy sites for integrated methadone programs, in which 16,500 people with opioid use disorder attended the service on a daily basis, including two operational pilot sites.  Tanzania continues to strengthen regional and international cooperation based on the principle of common and shared responsibility in countering the drug problem. This includes through capacity building, sharing good practices and lessons learned, as well as experiences with other partners at all levels.  Despite the implementation of a strategic plan, there is an alarming increase in the use of controlled pharmaceuticals, particularly opioids and benzodiazepines, in the country. Also, the trend of recent seizures revealed the diversion of precursor chemicals and the influx of new psychoactive substances and methamphetamine in the country. Thus, illicit drug trade continues to pose a significant threat to public health, environmental and socio-economic well-being, as well as safety and security of our country.  Tanzania believes that it is imperative to have a comprehensive, integrated, and balanced policy in addressing and countering the world drug program. We are grateful for the recommendations of the Ministerial Declaration of 2019, which act as guidance to member states, and call for more cooperation in countering the drug problem.

Burkina Faso:  Burkina Faso reiterates its commitment to the three international drug control conventions and the holistic approach to counter-narcotics. This approach is based on the principle of common and shared responsibility, as set forth in the political declaration and its activities from 2014, the UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) 2016 outcome document, and the 2019 ministerial declaration. My country faces security and humanitarian challenges marked by terrorist attacks, resulting in loss of human life and internal displacement, eroding our efforts against drug issues and introducing new challenges. Despite this, we believe it’s possible to tackle these emerging challenges in drug issues and illicit drug trafficking while continuing to combat terrorism, aligning with our political commitments.  Despite these challenges, we continue our national efforts to fulfil the obligations of the 2019 ministerial declaration. Efforts in reducing supply and demand include the implementation of Air Cop, capacity building for prevention, treatment, and reintegration through UNODC support, and assistance from partners like the Colombo Plan. Furthermore, in 2023, we initiated the development of a national strategy to combat drugs for 2025-2029. Sectoral strategies in educational institutions are being finalised to engage stakeholders in a holistic, balanced, and efficient fight against drugs.  However, we face significant challenges legally, institutionally, and financially, particularly in financing action plans and strategies, effective border control, establishing integrated treatment centres for drug users, revising drug laws, and setting up anti-drug units across the country. In conclusion, my delegation underscores the need to enhance international cooperation and UNODC support to states, ensuring success in combating the world drug problem. Thank you.


Nigeria:  Thank you, Mr. Chair, distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen. I am honoured to express my delegation’s gratitude for the adept leadership you’ve provided in steering this session. We also extend our appreciation to the Secretariat for supplying the necessary documentation for our deliberations. Recognizing the Commission’s dedication to resolving the global drug dilemma via the foundational drug control conventions and the strategic guidance of both the 2009 policy documents and the 2019 Ministerial Declaration, we commend these collective efforts aimed at mitigating the world drug problem.  The 2023 World Drug Report alarmingly highlights that illicit drug supplies have surged to unprecedented levels. This escalation, alongside the agility of trafficking networks, exacerbates global crises, challenging both health services and law enforcement. The report underscores the significant impact of inexpensive synthetic drugs in transforming drug markets, thereby affecting public health, safety, and well-being adversely. Furthermore, the adverse outcomes of drug trafficking and the illicit drug economy—ranging from instability and violence to environmental harm—are of significant concern. Notably, an increase in drug use among young people is reported, with a substantial portion of those seeking treatment for drug use disorders being under the age of 35. Disturbingly, the provision of necessary funds for treatment and other essential services is failing to keep pace with these needs, particularly disadvantaging women in accessing treatment.  This daunting landscape presents a particularly acute challenge for Africa, underscoring that no single country can confront this issue in isolation. The problem transcends national boundaries, necessitating a synergistic approach that encompasses national, regional, and international cooperation.   In alignment with this global directive, Nigeria has vigorously pursued various measures to fulfill its commitments under the ministerial declaration. Our efforts are manifested in the enactment of comprehensive legislation, the formulation of a national anti-narcotics policy, and the establishment of rigorous enforcement mechanisms. Noteworthy is Nigeria’s sustained Poppy-free status since 2001, demonstrating our steadfast commitment despite facing considerable socio-economic and security hurdles.  Our comprehensive strategy encompasses drug law enforcement, demand reduction, judicial collaboration, and international cooperation, aiming to provide a holistic response to the drug menace. Special emphasis is placed on catering to the needs of vulnerable demographics, including women, youth, and children, in our drug use prevention initiatives.  Acknowledging the indispensable role of international cooperation in tackling the multifaceted world drug problem, Nigeria has actively participated in collaborative endeavours, engaging in information sharing, operational coordination, and mutual legal assistance with global partners and international bodies such as UNODC.  To conclude, Nigeria reiterates its unwavering commitment to augmenting its counter-narcotics efforts, advocating for a reinforced comprehensive, balanced, integrated, and evidence-based approach to the global drug dilemma. We remain grateful for the guidance provided by the 2019 Ministerial Declaration and call for enhanced cooperation to effectively counteract the world drug problem.

Zambia: Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, in line with the fulfilment of international drug policy commitments and following through on all pledges in the spirit of the conventions to ensure no one impacted by the world drug problem is left behind, Zambia has launched its national policy on drug and substance control. This milestone aims to enhance the cohesion of efforts and implement strategies to combat illicit drugs and substance abuse within Zambia. Adhering to the 2014 Joint Ministerial Statement and the outcome document of the 30th Special Session of the General Assembly on international cooperation to counter the world drug problem, Zambia has dedicated itself to enacting all commitments through local, regional, and international cooperation, in partnership with agencies and civil society, such as Transparency International Zambia. We have signed Memorandums of Understanding, developed action plans, and undertaken benchmarking exercises regionally and locally to embrace best practices and lessons in addressing rising drug and substance abuse and the proliferation of crime among youth.  Zambia has demonstrated political will to bolster cooperation and coordination among national authorities, particularly in health, education, social justice, and law enforcement sectors. An interagency framework to combat white-collar crime has been established, enhancing intelligence cooperation among law enforcement agencies and fostering good governance and human rights with civil society’s help.  Through this intelligence framework, Zambia is making significant strides in disrupting connections between drug trafficking, corruption, human trafficking, and money laundering, among other organised crimes.  Beyond cannabis and heroin, Zambia faces challenges with the non-medical use of prescription drugs, especially cough mixtures containing codeine and desomorphine, posing increasing risks to public health and our youth.  Facing this escalating drug use issue, Zambia seeks technical assistance and capacity building in rehabilitating drug-dependent individuals, notably constructing a rehabilitation centre to improve recovery, rehabilitation, and social reintegration rates.  In conclusion, Zambia remains steadfast in fulfilling all commitments outlined in the 2019 Ministerial Declaration to address and counter the world drug problem through a multi-layered approach, encompassing local, regional, and international cooperation. Chairperson, I assure you of my delegation’s support and participation during the 67th session of the CND.

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland: Thank you, Chair and distinguished delegates will keep our intervention brief. And we’d like to thank the chair for the thematic sessions that took place late last year to discuss progress since 2019. It was clear from the discussions that progress has been made and it was good to see a growing emphasis on the benefits of high quality long term treatment and recovery systems. However, it was also clear from those discussions that the global community faces new threats and challenges, many of which had been discussed during the CND so far, notably, the continued threat from synthetic drugs including synthetic opioids. I’d like to thank the US for their work in addressing this challenge to the global coalition to address synthetic drugs and the work of the UN ODC. and we look forward to continuing to work closely with them and the international community on taking this work forward. Looking ahead, the UK will continue to take a balanced approach to these issues reflected in our 10 year drug strategy. which aims to increase access to treatment and recovery tackle illicit drugs supply and reduce the demand for drugs. Thank you

Kenya: To the CND Secretariat, we commend the coordinated follow-up on the implementation of all commitments. Kenya appreciates the Secretary’s report detailing progress in implementing international drug policy commitments and the summary of thematic discussions from the previous year. Aligned with the 2019 Ministerial Declaration, Kenya has intensified its efforts, particularly in demand reduction, aiming to ensure that no one is left behind. Our comprehensive and balanced strategy focuses on minimising the adverse public health consequences of drug abuse, incorporating primary prevention, harm reduction services, and ensuring access to controlled substances for medical and scientific purposes, all supported by a robust legal and policy framework. In tackling drug supply reduction, Kenya has adopted various measures against the production, trafficking, and abuse of illicit drugs, including coordinated intelligence gathering and effective case management, leading to significant seizures, arrests, and asset forfeitures. The thematic sessions and reports shared last year have been invaluable in enhancing our understanding and addressing the persistent global demand for narcotic and psychotropic substances and the challenges posed by synthetic drugs.To address these challenges, Kenya recommends: enhancing capacity to develop policies in line with the three international drug control conventions; improving ICT expertise to combat the misuse of technology for drug-related activities; strengthening national forensic laboratories for the analysis of new psychoactive substances; providing holistic health services to meet the needs of affected individuals and communities; ensuring capacity to conclusively handle drug-related cases, including those involving illicit financial flows and asset forfeiture.  As we reaffirm our commitment to the Ministerial Declaration and adherence to the international drug control conventions, we value the agenda on implementing all commitments as a standing item. It is our hope that by 2029, significant progress will be achieved in countering the world drug problem. Thank you, Mr. Chair

Russia: The competent authorities of Russia comply with all the provisions of the anti-drugs conventions of the UN, and we condemn weakening the system. Russia’s strategy to 2030 aligns with this stance. The situation in Russia remains stable, a continuity observed over the years, with no change in the proportion of drug crimes or registered users. This stability results from the targeted efforts of our police to stem drug trafficking channels within Russia. Controlled substances are seized, and numerous trafficking routes are curbed. The advent of digitalization poses challenges in terms of IT crimes. We closely monitor the use of the internet, messengers, and social networks for spreading drugs by blocking over 100,000 sites, not just for spreading but also promoting drugs. Law enforcement bodies give particular attention to blocking sites with pro-drug content. There’s ongoing work to counter designer drugs and NPS. Today, Russia boasts a multilevel effective system for controlled deliveries, preventing hundreds of analogues and derivatives variants from trafficking. In 2023, we noted several large cocaine shipments — totaling 3.5 tonnes, a trend not seen before, tied to stronger controls at crossing points for deliveries to Europe. Synthetic drugs are replacing plant-based ones, with seizures of methadone noted. Annually, hundreds of laboratories are dismantled, and precursors, usually from Eastern Asia, are seized.  To support the stability of the drug situation and minimise external threats, we consistently exert our utmost in terms of international cooperation through carefully calibrated mechanisms for information exchange. Preventive operations like CANAL, SPIDER, and PANGEA by Europol, resulted in the seizure of over 2.5 tonnes of substances and 27 tonnes of precursors. These operations identified thousands of drug-related crimes and flagged over 80,000 financial operations as suspicious, with hundreds of individuals identified. Our laws and integration with other countries have enhanced our efficiency. We bolster the capacity of state partners in counternarcotics, including Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, through training and implementation, supported by the Ministry of Interior of Russia and UNODC. This initiative has covered about 4,000 staff across more than 20 countries of the Pacific Asia region and Latin America.A comprehensive approach to the international drug issue and cooperation must remain free of politics for us to successfully create drug-free societies. Alternative approaches risk creating imbalances in national law enforcement and health systems, exacerbating the situation.

Namibia :As it relates to HIV interventions, Namibia is on a path to accelerate the response and reach epidemic control. Namibia achieved the 95-95-95 targets. A final acceleration is required to fully realise these targets. According to the latest data, Namibia has achieved an impressive 95-97-94. These achievements are a testament to our shared commitment to creating an HIV-free Namibia. To cover this last mile, Namibia developed the National Strategic Framework 2023-2024 / 2027-28 to achieve epidemic control by 2028 and end AIDS as a public threat by 2030. However, the increasing growth of diseases and population, along with low economic growth, calls for efficient approaches to deliver services. In this light, Namibia has put in place a social contracting policy to assist in continuing the progress made. Through this policy, the government enters cooperative agreements with civil society to provide health services that it’s the government’s responsibility to provide. This innovation, coupled with modern research models, allows for adequate results and indicators. CSOs are also embedded within the communities they serve and have established rapport and trust with local residents with key and vulnerable priority populations. Involving CSOs in delivering health services fosters community engagement and participation, improving health-seeking behaviours and outcomes. It will help strengthen the role of key stakeholders in service delivery in communities. Partnerships like this are essential to achieve UHC reforms, ensuring no one is left behind, with services that are affordable and accessible.

Kuwait: In 2019, Kuwait committed to bridging gaps in addressing persistent and emerging trends and challenges in drug use, and to strengthening cooperation and coordination between national authorities and law enforcement. Kuwait combats the scourge of drugs to safeguard our society, in alignment with the 1962 constitution and relevant laws and legislation regulating narcotics drugs and psychoactive substances and their use. In line with the mandate given by the 2019 Ministerial Declaration to review the implementation of drug commitments, here are achievements of the Ministry of Health: The Ministry established an addiction treatment centre specialised to serve over 10,000 patients (both nationals and residents), and provided services to over 51,000 clients in outpatient services. It’s worth noting that no fatalities were recorded at the centre last year. While these numbers may seem relatively high, they are among the lowest globally. The Ministries of Health and Interior continue to regularly monitor INCB newsletters and developments for information about substances with mental, psychological, and behavioural effects, and have formed a joint committee to consider substances being scheduled, in line with international developments. Kuwait has paid particular attention to awareness-raising and religious guidance to stem the scourge of drugs, with educational material prepared by relevant agencies. Recovering addicts are allowed to interact with new patients and offer them hope for recovery. To reduce drug use, Kuwait has trialled the use of electronic medical prescriptions through a user-friendly application available to nationals and residents..

Colombia: It’s crucial to highlight that UNODC’s official documentation, including information related to cocaine and Colombia, demonstrates the international system’s proven inability to achieve its goals and objectives. The challenges in implementing the commitments from the 2019 declaration are significant, as the 2023 World Drug Report indicates a soaring drug supply and emerging drug markets. The punitive approach has been shown to be ineffective, with periods of lower global availability of cocaine not correlating to increased eradication efforts, and in some cases, being quite the opposite. Consequently, drug use has escalated, with approximately 28,000 individuals worldwide testing positive for drugs at the time of death. Access to medical substances for medical and palliative care remains poor, and the criminal use of ICTs is on the rise. This scenario calls for a new approach and a critical review of the international drug control system, incorporating aspects such as a gender approach, alternatives to incarceration for drug-related crimes, harm reduction centred around human rights, and consideration of the environmental impact. Responding effectively to drug dependence is also paramount. While national and regional drug observatories play a crucial role, a different approach to data and analysis is needed. Colombia has been rigorously applying the drug control system, but it’s clear that continuing the same strategies and expecting different results is futile. The “Sowing Life” plan represents a new strategy for the country, acknowledging the work of civil society and introducing a model for comprehensive intervention to transition to licit economies, reduce dependency on illicit economies, and diminish drug crop cultivation. This includes promoting differentiated criminal procedures that recognize the vulnerability of individuals dependent on the drug economy. A law on community service is assisting a high percentage of women incarcerated for drug-related crimes—often heads of households in marginalised situations—by offering alternatives to incarceration through public service.

Cuba: Cuba is not involved in the production, storage, or transit of drugs, yet the external consequences of the drug scourge impact us significantly. Criminal networks from abroad attempt to utilize our territories, with traffickers often discarding drug caches overboard, which then wash up on our shores. Additionally, local cultivation of cannabis contributes to our drug problems. We are facing higher levels of complexity with traffickers using speed boats for dual operations, including human trafficking and drugs from the Central American region, and innovative trafficking methods also affect Cuba. The Ministry of Interior in Cuba operates a system for tracking drugs, enabling timely discovery and detention of new psychoactive substances (NPS). We continuously monitor, compile, and process information on the emergence of new synthetic drugs and conduct studies on global trends. National warnings are developed and shared with all entities to prepare law enforcement for prevention actions. The Ministry systematically carries out exercises for verification using both authentic and artificial drugs, enhancing the training of law enforcement and perfecting detection methodologies, including the training of K9 units.  In compliance with international drug control conventions, Cuba maintains 43 bilateral anti-drug agreements, following Article 9 of the 1988 convention on cooperation in this area. These agreements between the Ministry of Interior of Cuba and various countries contribute significantly to our fight against drug crime. For mutual legal assistance, in accordance with the 1988 convention, we have established 56 agreements, including 25 on mutual legal assistance in criminal matters, 20 on the transfer of convicts, and 11 on extradition. In cases where bilateral agreements are not in place, we adhere to the convention’s provisions.  Cuba supports the Global Container Program and cooperates with the World Customs Organization. Our airport interdiction efforts are enhanced through participation in AIRCOP, highlighting our commitment to international cooperation in combating the drug trafficking menace and its various implications.

Algeria: (…) 

Morocco: (…)

Gambia: Not in the room.

Angola: Vienna’s role is crucial in shaping our domestic approach to drug issues. International dialogue, despite differences, is key to enhancing global cooperation in combating the drug problem. Governments worldwide must commit to expanding evidence-based prevention and treatment programs, alongside monitoring and evaluation mechanisms to address the emergence of new psychoactive substances (NPS) and drug consumption trends. Addressing the consumption of drugs, whether legal, illegal, or synthetic, necessitates more assertive and comprehensive strategies.  Improving the living conditions of our population is paramount, ensuring access to essential services such as security, education, housing, and leisure, to prevent individuals, especially our youth, from engaging in risky behaviours or entering criminal adulthood. The African continent, particularly its women, faces significant vulnerabilities and challenges. Enhancing advocacy on these issues is crucial for better outcomes. Internal conflicts and displacement call for urgent action towards stability, peace, and security, essential for achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  In Angola, we are making progress in diminishing stigma through a therapeutic approach based on the 12 steps, similar to Narcotics Anonymous (NA), and incorporating spiritual education, which aligns with new WHO guidelines and has shown positive results. Our efforts are in strict adherence to the international drug control conventions and are aligned with the principles and goals of the 77+ China group. We reiterate our political commitment to contributing to a better world than the one we inherited.

Indonesia: Indonesia reaffirms its commitment to all commitments made in this forum. Our efforts to address and counter the drug problem are centred on prevention, rehabilitation, and community empowerment. We have adopted a soft power approach strategy that includes increasing public awareness through advocacy programs, coordination meetings, networks, evaluation, and technical guidance. These programs have engaged tens of thousands of individuals in hundreds of activities, including electronic platforms, to cultivate independent and drug-free societies. This involves providing life skills guidance in drug-prone areas and collaborating with relevant stakeholders in rehabilitation efforts.  Our measures of success include improved quality of life for clients, surpassing the 62% objective, which aligns with the World Health Organization’s definition, and reducing the risk of relapse. To continue these successes, Indonesia is committed to strengthening cooperation both nationally and internationally. We have strategized to foster collaboration and synergy with stakeholders at the national level, including government agencies and local communities. Internationally, we actively engage on various platforms to address and counter the drug problem, with a significant investment in education programs within healthcare facilities, underscoring the critical role of education in our comprehensive approach to drug issues.

Ghana: In 2020, Ghana passed a new drug law which sought to tackle drug use and drug-related problems as health and human rights issues, rather than criminal issues. The law dramatically reduced the sentences for many drug-related offences as well as providing for alternatives to incarceration and arrest for people who use drugs. Ghana began to take this bold path in the aftermath of the UNGASS in 2016.The coordination and cooperation of UN agencies and other partners, including civil society, has been essential for us in Ghana. And I want to highlight three examples of this partnership in action, and how it has helped us to progress towards balanced and evidence-based drug policies in my country.In December 2022, with support from the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), Ghana hosted the first National Dialogue on the International Guidelines on Human Rights and Drug Policy – a document produced by UNDP, OHCHR, UNAIDS, WHO and the International Centre on Human Rights and Drug Policy. The meeting was an important opportunity to bring together national stakeholders from different sectors to discuss the necessary actions that need to be taken. The report from the National Dialogue was submitted by my country as Conference Room Paper 11 at the 66th CND last March.In November 2023, again with support from UNAIDS, my delegation was privileged to host the first African Stakeholders Dialogue entitled ‘Strengthening Engagement in the CND’s 2024 Midterm Review. Ghana and colleagues from other African missions here in Vienna were joined by experts from UNODC, UNAIDS, OHCHR, WHO and the African Union, National Drug Control Experts – as well as representatives of African civil society organisations including the African Network of People who Use Drugs. Our discussions were broad and fruitful and included drug prevention, harm reduction, palliative care, drug treatment and policy reform including alternatives to incarceration and punishment. I am pleased to invite you to look at Conference Room Paper 9 for this session, which is the meeting report from our Dialogue, and I thank all our colleagues and partners for their contributions.Thirdly, and coming out of the African Stakeholders Dialogue, we have worked with the African Union to draft and disseminate a Common African Position in time for our midterm review last week – which you are invited to read on the contributions page of the midterm review itself.These examples demonstrate the value that cooperation and support from our international and regional partners, as well as from experts from civil society, have supported the efforts of Ghana towards more humane, effective policy responses. We support and appreciate the work of the UN System Coordination Task Team on the implementation of the UN System Common Position on drug-related matters and urge member states to continue to support their work.

Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR): Mr. Chair,The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights thank you for the invitation to speak under the agenda 6 of the 67th session of the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs.Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,The UN Human Rights Office welcomes the adoption last week of the High-level Declaration on the 2024 midterm review, following up to the 2019 Ministerial Declaration. In this new document, all Member States reiterated the commitment to respect, protect and promote all human rights. They also recognized the “urgent need to take further ambitious, effective, improved and decisive actions […] to propel concrete, comprehensive, balanced, integrated, multidisciplinary and scientific evidence-based policies and initiatives, in order to promote a better implementation of all international drug policy commitments placing the health and wellbeing, human rights, public security and safety of all members of society, in particular those most affected”.Mr. Chair,The Special Rapporteur on the right to health, supported by OHCHR, stresses that there are forms of discrimination, disproportionately impacting certain groups of the population which are intersecting, including persons who use drugs which is not a homogeneous group.In this regard, drug users can also be composed of persons in situations of homelessness or poverty, people with mental health issues, sex workers, women, children, LGBTIQA+ persons, Black persons, Indigenous Peoples, migrant people, persons who are incarcerated or detained, persons with disabilities, persons living with HIV or hepatitis, and persons living in rural areas.The Special Rapporteur indicated that, as the world grows older, drug use among people over 65 has also increased. Older drug users are also more often using the dark web, social media, and online forums to obtain illicit substances resulting in a rise of drug-related deaths among older populations.The Special Rapporteur emphasises that access to healthcare without discrimination is fundamental for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals related to health and well-being.In June last year, for the World Drug Day, the Special Rapporteur together with other UN experts called on the international community to replace punishment with support and promote policies that respect, protect and fulfil the rights of all.  The experts stressed that such discriminatory impact is a common element across drug policies with regard to the widest range of human rights, including the right to privacy and the right to health, which also encompasses access to essential medicines and palliative care.She reiterated that everyone without exception has the right to life-saving harm reduction interventions, which are essential for the protection of the right to health of people who use drugs. The situation is particularly critical for women, LGBTIQA+ persons, and other marginalised groups mentioned above, for whom harm reduction and treatment services may not be adapted or respond to their specific needs.Mr. Chair,The Special Rapporteur is currently preparing a report that will be presented to the Human Rights Council in Geneva in June this year, on the topic of “Drug policies and responses: a right to health framework on harm reduction”,  to which around 100 stakeholders, including Member States provided inputs for the preparation of the report.She hopes that the report findings and recommendations will contribute to the implementation of State commitments made in 2019 and the last week High-level Declaration on the 2024 midterm review following up to the 2019 Ministerial Declaration.Mr. Chair,The Special Rapporteur on the right to health stands ready to support States in the adoption of legislation and policies focused on the right to health of persons who use drugs.Thank you.

UNAIDS: Thank you, Mr. Chair, excellencies, member states, civil society partners, and UN colleagues.UNAIDS is honoured to be back at this regular session of the CND. Let me echo the sentiments of our Executive Director and thank UNODC, and particularly the HIV/AIDS team, for its valuable and impactful contribution to the Joint Programme and the Global AIDS response.We welcome the many statements we have heard reaffirming the importance of a public health, people-centred and human rights-based approach to drug policy. However, it is clear we have plenty of challenges and we are not yet where we want to be. HIV prevalence among people who inject drugs is seven times higher than among other adults. Median prevalence is twice as high for women who inject drugs than men.Since 2018 only 5 countries reported meeting WHO recommended coverage of needles and syringes, and only 3 reported meeting the recommendations for opioid agonist maintenance therapy. Communities of people who inject drugs are the least likely to be included in policy making relating to drugs.Funding for harm reduction is a small fraction of what it needs to be for an effective response.If we do not radically change our approach we will not end AIDS as a public health threat. We must scale up investment in HIV prevention services for people who use drugs, remove legal barriers and put communities in the lead.UNAIDS advocates for a people-centred, human rights-based and public health approach to drug policy because the evidence shows that it works.We provide technical support in countries to develop harm reduction policies and programmes, support the leadership of organizations led by people who use drugs in both advocacy and service delivery, and policy reform towards decriminalisation of drug use.UNAIDS in collaboration with other UN agencies is committed to supporting the implementation of the UN Common Position on Drug related matters and the International Guidelines on Human Rights and Drug Policy and the recent OHCHR report.UNAIDS is committed to continue supporting governments and communities to implement human rights- and evidence-based policies and services for people who use drugs. We cannot end AIDS if we do not end it among people who inject drugs. Collectively we must and can end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.Thank you


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