Le Document final de l’UNGASS révèle une compréhension limitée de l'impact négatif des conventions internationales de contrôle des drogues sur la santé publique. Pour en savoir plus, en anglais, veuillez lire les informations ci-dessous.

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By Doctor Willem Scholten

The United Nations General Assembly Special Session on The World Drug Problem (UNGASS) will be held in New York next week. Diplomats in Vienna have negotiated the text of the Outcome Document to be recommended for adoption at this meeting.

Although it is good to see the inclusion of a stand alone section on access to controlled medications, the draft reveals a limited understanding of the negative impact of the international drug control conventions on public health.

The document’s subtitle: ‘Our joint commitment in effectively addressing and countering the world drug problem’ contains language that is biased towards a law-enforcement approach to controlled substances.

Systemic human rights violations in the War on Drugs

In this article, I will focus on access to medicines controlled under the three UN Drug Control Conventions, but first, I will refer to a guest editorial by Damon Barret, Director of the International Centre on Human Rights and Drug Policy.

He describes the evolution of his thinking on the relation between human rights violations and the War on Drugs.

Initially, he saw these violations as collateral damage, but now he considers them to be a systemic problem.

What states are legally required to do under the UN drug control treaties can be exceptionally risky from a human rights perspective.

For example, he points out that the application of the death penalty for drugs increased after the 1988 drug trafficking convention was adopted.

Today, Barret considers human rights violations in the War on Drugs as institutional violations caused by the conventions.

Click here to read the full article.            

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Thumbnail: Flickr Simon D