Statement of the Group of 77 and China during the 60th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, 13-17 March 2017, delivered by H.E. Ambassador Reza Najafi, Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran
Vienna, 13 March 2017
H.E. Ambassador Bente Angell-Hansen of Norway, Chair of the 60th Session of the Commission on Narcotics Drugs,
H.E. Mr. Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime,
Excellences, Distinguished delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen,
1. It is my honour to speak today on behalf of the Group of 77 and China. At the outset, let me congratulate all delegations on the auspicious occasion of the sixtieth anniversary of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs.
2. I felicitate Ambassador Bente Angell-Hansen of Norway on her election as the Chair of the 60th session of the Commission, as well as to the other elected members of the Bureau. The Group pledges to the Chair its full cooperation to make the present session a success.
3. I also appreciate the Secretariat for carrying out the preparatory work for the present session in a professional manner.
4. The Group reiterates that the world drug problem remains a common and shared responsibility that should be addressed in a multilateral setting through effective, concrete and increased international cooperation, based on an integrated, multidisciplinary, mutually reinforcing, balanced, scientific evidence-based and comprehensive approach.
5. The Group recognizes the efforts undertaken by our authorities from the law enforcement, criminal justice, health, education and other relevant authorities, including those of developing countries, in addressing and countering the world drug problem.
6. The Group reaffirms its unwavering commitment to ensuring that all aspects of demand reduction and related measures, supply reduction and related measures, and international cooperation are addressed in full conformity with the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, international law and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, with full respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of States, the principle of non-intervention in the international affairs of States, all human rights, fundamental freedoms, the inherent dignity of all individuals and the principles of equal rights and mutual respect among States.
7. The Group reiterates that the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961, as amended by the 1972 Protocol, the Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971, the United Nations Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances of 1988, and other relevant international instruments constitute the cornerstone of the international drug control system.
8. The Group recognizes, as part of a comprehensive, integrated and balanced approach to addressing and countering the world drug problem, that appropriate emphasis should be place on individuals, families, communities and society as a whole, with a view to promoting and protecting the health, safety and well-being of all humanity.
9. The Group recognizes that transit States continue to face multifaceted challenges, and reaffirms the continuing need for cooperation and support, including the provision of technical assistance, inter alia, to enhance their capacities to address and counter the world drug problem, in full conformity with the 1988 Convention and on the basis of common and shared responsibility.
10. The Group welcomes the outcome document of the special session titled “Our joint commitment to effectively addressing and countering the world drug problem”, and stresses the need for concerted international efforts for its effective follow-up.
11. The Group remains fully committed to implementing the 2009 Political Declaration and its Plan of Action, to addressing the general challenges and priorities for action identified in the Joint Ministerial Statement adopted at the High Level Review in March 2014 and to implementing the UNGASS 2016 outcome document in its entirety.
12. To effectively address and counter the world drug problem in light of the collective commitments, it is of critical importance to enhance international cooperation based on the established principle of common and shared responsibility, in particular with developing countries. In this context, the Group:
a. Highlights the need to further strengthen North-South, South-South and triangular cooperation;
b. Emphasizes the need to promote complementarity in efforts to address and counter the world drug problem at international, regional and sub-regional level;
c. Calls upon the international community to provide sufficient resources including financial resources, concrete capacity-building assistance, technology and equipment to developing countries, upon request, to assist them in building their capacities in effectively addressing and countering the world drug problem;
d. Urges international community to provide support, upon request, to law enforcement, criminal justice, health and education authorities of the developing countries to assist them in addressing the persistent and emerging challenges;
e. Provide assistance to requesting developing countries in improving the availability, access and affordability of controlled substances for medical and scientific purposes, while preventing their diversion;
f. Calls for enhanced international cooperation to promote inclusive economic growth and support initiatives that contribute to the sustainability of social and economic development as well as poverty eradication;
g. Calls upon the international community to support sustainable and long-term alternative development programs, including preventive alternative development, which are part of sustainable crop control strategies, taking into account the UN Guiding Principles on Alternative Development;
h. International assistance to developing countries, based on the principle of common and shared responsibility, should be without any conditions.
13. The Group emphasizes the need for sustainable and sufficient resources for the UNODC in order for the Office to enhance its capacity-building initiatives, programmes and activities particularly for developing countries, in cooperation and collaboration with all relevant United Nations entities and international financial institutions, within their respective mandates.
14. The Group expresses the need to respond to the serious challenges posed by the increasing links between drug trafficking, corruption and other forms of organized crime, including, trafficking in persons, trafficking in firearms, cybercrime and money-laundering, and, in some cases, terrorism including money-laundering in connection with the financing of terrorism, by using an integrated, multidisciplinary approach, such as through promoting and supporting reliable data collection, research and, as appropriate, intelligence- and analysis-sharing to ensure effective policymaking and interventions.
15. The recognizes that there are persistent, new and evolving challenges that should be addressed in conformity with the three international drug control conventions, which allow for sufficient flexibility for States parties to design and implement national drug policies according to their priorities and needs, consistent with the principle of common and shared responsibility and applicable international law.
16. The Group reaffirms its determination to tackle the world drug problem and to actively promote a society free of drug abuse in order to help to ensure that all people can live in health, dignity and peace, with security and prosperity, and reaffirm our determination to address public health, safety and social problems resulting from drug abuse.
17. Looking forward, in the lead up to the 2019, which is the target date set in the 2009 Political Declaration on the world drug problem, the Group emphasizes the need for the international community, in particular developed countries by providing means of implementation, to accelerate the ongoing efforts to address and counter the world drug problem.