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International drug policy origins and current tensions
Transcript of International drug policy origins and current tensions
2nd Opium Conference 1924, Geneva
1909 Shanghai Opium Conference
1912 International Opium Convention
International drug control policy time line
The International Opium Convention
Regulate international trade on opium and other drugs
End opium trade in 15 years 'only 15y after china end execessive production (UK)
System of import/export certification system creation of the Permanent Central Opium Board (future INCB)
Signatories to submit statistics of production of opium, morphine heroine, cocaine
1) eliminate opium smoking in 10 years
2) Restrict opium and coca production to medical and scientific needs
US leads the prohibitionist crusade and refuse to ratify a too weak treaty
The most influential actor in
international drug control circles.
Commssioner of the
Federal Bureau of Narcotics
for 33 years (1930-1963)
United Nations General Assembly Special Session
The CND Commission on narcotic Drugs
The United Nations Office for Drugs and Crime
International Narcotic Control Board
The UN drugs control structure
The consensus among marihuana smokers is that the use of the drug creates a definite feeling of adequacy.
The practice of smoking marihuana does not lead to addiction in the medical sense of the word.
The sale and distribution of marihuana is not under the control of any single organized group.
The use of marihuana does not lead to morphine or heroin or cocaine addiction and no effort is made to create a market for these narcotics by stimulating the practice of marihuana smoking.
Marihuana is not the determining factor in the commission of major crimes.
Marihuana smoking is not widespread among school children.
Juvenile delinquency is not associated with the practice of smoking marihuana.
The publicity concerning the catastrophic effects of marihuana smoking in New York City is unfounded.
"... eliminating or significantly reducing the illicit cultivation of the coca bush, the cannabis plant and the opium poppy by the year 2008."
- "... eliminating or significantly reducing the illicit manufacture, marketing and trafficking of psychotropic substances, including synthetic drugs ..."
- "... achieving significant and measurable results in the field of demand reduction by the year 2008."
Establish 2019 as a target date to eliminate or reduce significantly and measurably
" the illicit cultivation of opium coca bush and cannabis plants
" the illicit demand for drugs
"the illicit production, manufacture, trafficking,...
" the diversion of precursors
"the money laundering related to illict drugs
(mid-term review in 2014)
United Nation Special Session on Drugs
General Assembly resolution 67/193 of 20 December 2012,
the Assembly decided to convene, in early 2016, a special session on the world drug
review the progress made
in the implementation of the Political Declaration and Plan of Action, including
an assessment of the achievements and
in countering the world drug problem,
High Level Review of the 2009 Plan
13-21 March 2014
Mexico, Colombia, Guatemala proposal to 'review the approach'
Three groups of countries
The public health
Uruguay, Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador Guatemala, Czech Republic
Reform the system
Openly discuss alternative regimes
Revise the Conventions
Legalise Cannabis (not all of them)
Singapore Iran, Afghanistan Russia Japan China, Sweden,
Drug free society
prohibition and criminalistaion (not all of them)
Zero-tolerance approach to drugs’
The EU MS, Lithuania, UK Netherlands, France, Poland, Denmark, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Norway, Brazil, Bolivia Ukraine, Niger, India, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia,
Public health - Harm reduction (not all of them) - No to criminalisation of users (not all of them) - Alternatives to imprisonment
The indian Hemp Drugs Commission report
1. Total prohibition is not necessary...
2. Policy to control to impede the excessive use
3. Taxation, licencing limited nº of shops, limit the quantity to be possessed,...
Marihuana is used extensively in the Borough of Manhattan but the problem is not as acute as it is reported to be in other sections of the United States.
The introduction of marihuana into this area is recent as compared to other localities.
The cost of marihuana is low and therefore within the purchasing power of most persons.
LA GUARDIA REPORT 1944
Is something happening
in the field of drug policy
at international level?
70.000 drugs related killing
2006 - 2012
Legalisation of coca chewing
The 3 Conventions
UNGASS 1998; PD 2009, UNGASS 2016
The principle of 'all together' (50s - 80s)
North South division
US drug certification mechanism
The dualism between
consumers and producer countries
NL Coffee Shops
Harm Reduction Approaches
Drug Consumption Rooms
Since 1986, more than 90 DCRs have been set up in Switzerland, the Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Luxembourg, Norway, Canada and Australia.
Substitution Treatment; Decriminalisation of use;
To have faith into the system
UK delegate, Mr Richardson: “
Some people are giving up the battle, claiming that the narcotics problem is insurmountable. They refer to the fact that we have been unable to solve the problem within the framework of existing legislation... We must not surrender to the head-in-the-sand policy advocated by the supporters of legalisation
The Under-Secretary of State for Italy,
I believe these attitudes could be very dangerous because they may weaken our commitment against narcotic drugs trafficking...
To be open to debate
"I believe that we have reached the point where we must realise that there is a need for new approaches to the drug problem... There may be a need to shift the focus of our efforts from law enforcement to prevention and treatment."
Spain (baltazar garzon):
"The time has come to pause and meditate on the solutions that should be adopted. To evaluate what has been achieved and to think about the future. We should come to this debate without any preconceived ideas or immovable dogmas. We must be open to the exchange of ideas”.
1993 UN RESOLUTION 48/12
Request the CND to
monitor and evaluate
the implementation of national and international drug control instruments, so as to identify areas of
progress and weakness
recommend appropriate adjustments
of drug control activities whenever required.
Ad-hoc Advisory group
to contribute to the examination of the issues and identify "concrete action-oriented recommendations
Ad-hoc Advisory group
Mexico, USA, India, Argentina, the Russian Federation, Sweden, Poland, Japan, Egypt and Nigeria
Tone of the group : on Harm Reduction as the Trojan horse of legalisation
- Expert group on the classification of coca leaf and cannabis
- Study harm reduction and decriminalisation
- Convene an international conference to evaluate achievement in drug policy
1995 - 1996
"We have deep concern at the voices raised for liberalising drug consumption... The UN from its high position must be clear. Any doubt, hesitation, or unjustified review of the validity of goals will only undermine our commitment... Our goals are noble and inflexible. We cannot be successful if there are discordant voices.
: "it is impossible to continue on the present road, we call for a World Summit to seek out the reasons for the impotence of the present system of control"
The distribution and use of marihuana is centered in Harlem.
The majority of marihuana smokers are Negroes and Latin-Americans.
54.8% voted in favor in elections in 2012
Former President of Poland
Human rights activist, former UN Special Rapporteur on Arbitrary,
Extrajudicial and Summary Executions, Pakistan
Writer and public intellectual, Mexico – in memoria
Former President of Colômbia
Former President of Mexico
Fernando Henrique Cardoso
Former President of Brazil (chair)
Former Prime Minister of Greece
Former Secretary of State, United States (honorary chair)
Former European Union High Representative for the
Common Foreign and Security Policy, Spain
Banker and civil servant,
chair of the World Trade Center Memorial, United States
Former President of Portugal
Former Secretary General of the United Nations, Ghana
Former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights,
president of the International Crisis Group, Canada
Former Secretary-General of the I
nternational Chamber of Commerce, Switzerland
Mario Vargas Llosa
Writer and public intellectual, Peru
Professor of medicine, former Executive director of the
Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria
Former Chairman of the US Federal Reserve and of the Economic Recovery Board, US
Former Mayor of Prague, member of the Parliament, Czech Republic
Former president of Chile
Entrepreneur, advocate for social causes, founder of the Virgin Group,
cofounder of The Elders, United Kingdom
Former President of Switzerland and Minister of Home Affairs
Former Minister of Foreign Affairs and UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Norway
Pressure to consensus
Creation of internationalisation of drugs problem
International drug policy