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    UNIS/NAR/1272
    20 April 2016

    International Narcotics Control Board holds side event at the margins of the General Assembly special session on the World Drug Problem

    VIENNA/NEW YORK, 20 April (UN Information Service) - At the margins of the United Nations General Assembly special session (UNGASS) on the World Drug Problem in New York, the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) held a side event entitled "The Drug Control Conventions: a multi-faceted framework for the promotion of the health and welfare of humankind".

    INCB President Werner Sipp stressed in his opening remarks that "proportionality is central to the drug treaties and that sanctions must be proportionate to the severity of the offence and the degree of criminal responsibility of the offender".

    In the context of criminal justice, INCB Rapporteur Bernard Leroy emphasized that "the prevention of drug-related criminality is wholeheartedly welcomed by the Board". INCB Second Vice-President Jagjit Pavadia added that "precursors control is a form of prevention because it aims at depriving organized crime from opportunities to acquire the chemicals they need for the illicit manufacture of drugs".

    During the side event, INCB Board Members showed how drug control and health challenges can be addressed through a comprehensive and balanced implementation of the three international drug control conventions. In particular, the event focused on the implementation of the provision of the treaties in the areas of regulatory control, criminal justice responses, health and demand reduction, and availability and rational use of controlled medicines. Having reiterated the requirement of the Conventions that governments take all practicable measures for the prevention and treatment of drug abuse, Board Member Richard P. Mattick noted: "One important aspect of drug policy is the need to reduce negative health and social consequences of drug use." INCB First Vice-President Sri Suryawati referred to the recently published INCB special report on availability and stated that there was no reason why, in 2016, people around the world should still go without the medicines they need, and outlined a range of actions Member States should take.

    Representatives of Member States and civil society organizations present at the event engaged in discussions with the Board on how the treaties can aid the implementation of the 2009 Political Declaration and Plan of Action on International Cooperation towards an Integrated and Balanced Strategy to Counter the World Drug Problem and other topics discussed during UNGASS. In closing the event, Mr. Sipp said that "the three drug control conventions continue to provide a flexible and viable framework for the implementation of measures by States to address the drug problem in all its incarnations".

    The event was webcast and can be viewed here.

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    INCB is the independent, quasi-judicial body charged with promoting and monitoring Government compliance with the three international drug control conventions: the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances, and the 1988 Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances. Established by the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961,  the thirteen members of the Board  are elected in a personal capacity by the Economic and Social Council for terms of five years.

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    For further information, please contact:

    INCB Secretariat 
    Telephone for media inquiries: (+43-1) 26060 4163
    Email:  secretariat@incb.org  
    Website:  www.incb.org