At the Substantive Session of the Economic and Social Council on Thursday, 30th July 2009 in Geneva, the report of the International Narcotics Control Board was presented by the President of the INCB, Professor Sevil Atasoy.  He declared that multilateral drug control was ‘one of the 20th century’s greatest achievements’ .  Professor Atasoy also highlighted a number of challenges, however, in particular,  the ‘important issue of public health…low licit consumption of opioid-based medications’ and stated, ‘The Board calls on Governments to establish policies to make these substances available for medical purposes and to support the Access to Controlled Medications Programme, which is being implemented by the World Health Organisation’.  Read the statment below.  The INCB report can be accessed here.

The INCB report was either welcomed or passed without comment by all delegates except the Iranian delegate, who drew attention to the difficulties that Iran faces in ‘being situated in the neighbourhood of the biggest producer of drugs in the world’ but for the assistance provided by the involvement of the private sector and NGOs and called for further allocation of funds by the international community to the fight against drugs.