15 October 2003


NEW YORK, 14 October (UN Headquarters) -- Trafficking in drugs and human beings not only affected numerous lives, but, through links to terrorism and other transnational criminal activities such as money laundering and corruption, threatened the security and stability of the international community, said the representative of Romania as the Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian, Cultural) concluded its consideration of crime prevention and international drug control today.

Efforts undertaken at the national level to contain and control trafficking in human beings and drugs would not bear fruits unless all members of the international community committed all their available material, human and financial resources to implement integrated policies and foster common approaches with regional partners, he continued.  Drug trafficking control was a problem that could be addressed only through coordinated actions undertaken at national, regional and international levels.

The need for coordination and cooperation in the face of transnational organized crime was also stressed by the representative of India, who welcomed the measures taken by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to emphasize an integrated approach to fighting drugs, crime and terrorism.  Bilateral, regional and international collaboration was needed to battle all aspects of international terrorism and transnational crime involving drugs, money laundering, arms and the illegal movement of nuclear, biological and chemical materials.  

Several delegations, including representatives of Liechtenstein, Pakistan, Romania, and the Philippines expressed their appreciation for the important work of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, and stressed the importance of the Office coordinating international action on crime prevention.  A few speakers highlighted the need for the international community to support the work of the Office by ensuring adequate resources, including an increase in the share for UNODC from the regular United Nations budget.

Over the past few days, delegations raised concerns about the trafficking of human beings, drugs and small arms, and the general spread of organized transnational crime through the use of modern technologies.  Many delegations also stressed that organized crime was inextricably linked to terrorism, and that policies of States needed to be comprehensive, targeted and based on solid cooperation on local, national, regional and international levels. 

Poverty and the lack of opportunities were cited as reasons behind the cultivation, trafficking and consumption of illicit drugs by several delegations.


It was therefore essential to invest in socio-economic development, including through the provision of crop alternatives for poppy farmers.  Many speakers expressed their concern about the situation in Afghanistan and called on the international community to continue providing assistance in the battle against drugs.  

Delegations also welcomed the entry into force, two weeks ago, of the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and the conclusion of the drafting of the Convention against Corruption.  They expressed hope that those new international legal and preventive mechanisms would further bolster the unity of the international community in the fight against global crime. 

Also today, draft resolutions were introduced on the World Summit for Social Development and the twenty-fourth special session of the General Assembly; cooperatives in social development; implementation of the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons; policies and programmes involving youth; and follow-up to the International Year of Older Persons -- Second World on Ageing, by representatives of Chile, Mongolia, Philippines, Senegal, and Morocco, on behalf of the Group of 77 and China and Mexico.

The representatives of the following countries also addressed the Committee on crime prevention and international drug control:  Uganda, Cuba, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Belarus, Viet Nam, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Mozambique.

The observer of the Holy See also addressed the Committee today.

The Committee will reconvene tomorrow at 10 a.m. to begin its consideration of the advancement of women.

* *** *