INCB Activities

Mission to the Republic of Senegal

VIENNA, 31 October - From 24-27 October 2016, an INCB mission visited the Republic of Senegal. The mission was led by Mr. Raymond Yans, Member of the Board, accompanied by Mr. Paul Rabbat of the INCB secretariat. The objective of the mission was to discuss the implementation by the Republic of Senegal of the three international drug control conventions.

The mission, which was coordinated by the Inter-ministerial Committee on Drugs, included meetings with the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Justice, Finance, Health, Defence, Interior and Public Security and the Ministry of Social Action as well as with Customs and Law enforcement authorities.

While in the country, the mission also visited a treatment facility as well as two NGOs working in the field of prevention.

The findings of the mission will be presented to the Board at its 118th session, scheduled to take place in February 2017.

 

INCB concludes treaty compliance monitoring visit to Bolivia

LA PAZ/VIENNA, 25 October - The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) undertook a treaty compliance monitoring visit to the Plurinational State of Bolivia from 17 to 20 October 2016. The purpose of the mission was to discuss with the Government of Bolivia its compliance with the three international drug control treaties, in particular the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961, as amended by the 1972 Protocol Amending the Single Convention, in view of Bolivia's reaccession to that Convention with a reservation with respect to coca leaves in 2013. Under the reservation, and since February 2013, the chewing of coca leaf and the consumption and use of the coca leaf in its natural state for "cultural and medicinal purposes" are permitted on the territory of the Plurinational State of Bolivia.

The Board appreciates the acceptance of the Government of Bolivia of the mission and the efforts it made regarding its organization. The delegation of INCB was led by Mr. Bernard Leroy, Member of the Board, accompanied by Mr. Stefano Berterame of the INCB Secretariat.

The mission held consultations with the Minister of Government, Carlos Romero, the Minister of Rural Development and Land, Cesar Cocarico, the Vice-Minister of Social Defence and Controlled Substances, Felipe Caceres, and the Vice-Minister of Coca and Integral Development, Ernesto Cordero.

Consultations were also held with the representatives of the law enforcement agency responsible for the fight against drug trafficking (FELCN), as well as with the joint task force of the army responsible for the eradication of illicit cultivation of coca bush. The mission was able to witness the eradication efforts carried out in the area of Madidi National park (Norte de la Paz) and in the area of Chimore (Chapare). In addition, the mission met with representatives of the Departmental Association of Coca Producers (ADEPCOCA) in the market of Villa Fatima.

The conclusions and finding of the mission will be considered by the Board at its 117th and 118th sessions in November 2016 and February 2017 following which INCB will transmit its confidential recommendations on measures to be taken by the Government of Bolivia to further drug control treaty compliance in the country.

 

Mission to Canada

VIENNA, 25 October - A mission of the Board visited Canada from 19 to 21 October 2016.  The mission was conducted by Mr. Werner Sipp, President of the Board, accompanied by Ms. Beate Hammond of the INCB secretariat. The primary objective of the mission was to discuss legislative measures currently being developed relating to the legalization and regulation of the non-medical use of cannabis. The last mission of the Board visited Canada in 2013.

The mission held high-level talks with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Minister of Health, the Chair of the Task Force on Marijuana Legalization and Regulation, and the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Justice and Attorney-General of Canada and Member of the House of Commons for Scarborough Southwest, Ontario. Meetings were also held with the participation of senior officials from Health Canada, Global Affairs Canada, Public Safety Canada, the Department of Justice, the British Columbia Ministry of Public Safety, the British Columbia Ministry of Health, Vancouver Police, City of Vancouver and the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse. In addition, the mission had the opportunity to visit a drug injection facility in British Columbia as well as a licensed manufacturer of medical cannabis in Ontario. The mission also conferred with representatives of the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition, the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network and Moms Stop the Harm.

Discussions focused on compliance with the international drug control treaties, national and international drug control policy, including the planned legalization of the non-medical use of cannabis, overdoses related to fentanyl, the new access to cannabis for medical purposes regulations, drug injection rooms, and the proposals and action taken by the Government to address these issues.

The findings of the mission will be considered by the Board at its session in November 2016.

 

Mission to the Republic of South Africa

From 19 - 21 October 2016, an INCB mission visited the Republic of South Africa. The mission was led by Mr. Raymond Yans, Member of the Board, accompanied by Mr. Paul Rabbat of the INCB secretariat. The objective of the mission was to discuss the implementation by the Republic of South Africa of the three international drug control conventions.

The mission, which was coordinated by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, held-high level talks with senior officials from the South African Government.

Meetings were held with the participation of the Department of Social Development, the Central Drug Authority, Home Affairs, the Departments of Basic Education and Higher Education and Training, the Health and Medicines Control Council, the National Youth Commission, Justice and Constitutional Services, the Department of Sport and Recreation, the Department of Science and Technology, the Department of Correctional Services, the South African Police Services and the South African Revenue Service. While in the country, the mission also visited the Dr Fabian and Florence Ribeiro Treatment Centre.

The findings of the mission will be presented to the Board at its 118th session, scheduled to take place in February 2017.

 

Mission to the State of Palestine

The first mission of the INCB to the State of Palestine was carried out from 21 to 22 July 2016. The mission was led by Major-General Ahmed Kamel Al-Din Samak, Member of the Board accompanied by Ms. Hanifa Rebbani of the INCB secretariat. The objectives of the mission were to discuss issues related to trends in trafficking and abuse of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursors and measures taken to address them, as well as the availability for medical purposes of substances under international control.

The mission which was proficiently coordinated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) held consultations with senior officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Justice. The mission also met with the Deputy Minister at the Ministry of Health and had discussions with senior officials at the Ministry of Health, including the General Directorate of Pharmacy, the Dangerous Drugs Department, the Legal Advisor and the Addiction and Prevention Program.

While in Ramallah, the mission also met with the senior officials at the Police Directorate and members of United Nations agencies including the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

The findings of the mission will be considered by the Board at its session in November 2016 and will be reflected in the INCB Annual Report for 2016.

 

Mission to Israel

An INCB mission visited Israel from 18 to 20 July 2016. The mission was conducted by Major-General Ahmed Kamel Al-Din Samak, member of the Board, accompanied by Ms. Hanifa Rebbani of the INCB secretariat. Israel is party to the three international drug control conventions. The objective of the mission was to review the drug control developments and the Israeli Government's compliance with the treaties since the last mission of the Board to Israel in 2009.

The mission,  which was efficiently coordinated by the Israeli Anti-Drug Authority (IADA) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, met with the Minister for Public Security and held consultations with senior officials of the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Justice, and the Ministry of Economy and Industry.  Consultations were also held with senior officials of the Israeli Medical Cannabis Agency, the Police and Customs and the Israel Tax Authority.

The mission visited the Knesset, Hermon prison, Haifa port and canine unit and the Ilanot therapeutic center.  

The findings of the mission will be considered by the Board at its session in November 2016 and will be reflected in the INCB Annual Report for 2016, which will be published in early 2017.

 

Mission to the Republic of the Union of Myanmar

A mission of the Board visited the Republic of the Union of Myanmar from 13 June to 17 June 2016. The mission was led by Mr. Werner Sipp, President of the Board, accompanied by Ms. Ha Fung NG (Cilla) of the INCB secretariat. The objective of the mission was to review drug control developments in the country regarding the implementation of the international drug control conventions since the Board's last mission in 2010.

The mission, which was coordinated by the Central Committee for Drug Abuse Control, held consultations with the Deputy Ministers of the Ministries of Home Affairs and Border Affairs. Meetings with other senior officials of the Police Force, the Attorney General Office and the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Education, Health, Planning and Finance were also held. The mission also visited the 1000-beds General Hospital in Nay Pyi Taw, the Drug Treatment Centre in the Mental Health Hospital and the Myanmar Pharmaceutical Factory in Yangon.

Discussions focused on latest developments in drug control situation in light of the recent political changes in the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, legislative proposals and administrative measures of the Government to address drug-related challenges as well as on issues related to the availability of controlled substances for medical needs.  

The findings of the mission will be considered by the Board at its session in November 2016.

 

Mission to the Republic of Argentina

INCB carried out a mission to the Republic of Argentina from 31 May to 3 June 2016. Professor Francisco Thoumi, Member of the Board and its Standing Committee on Estimates, led the mission accompanied by Mr. Stefano Berterame of the INCB secretariat. The objective of the mission was to review drug control developments and progress in the implementation of the international drug control conventions since the Board's last mission to the country in 2006. The mission, which was coordinated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, held consultations with senior officials of the Ministry of Security,  Ministry of Justice, Foreign Affairs, SEDRONAR (Secretariat for Programming Drug Abuse Prevention and the Fight against Drug Trafficking under the Presidency of the Republic), with whom issues relating drug abuse prevention, treatment and services were discussed, and the competent national authority responsible for the control of medicinal products (ANMAT) and representatives of various government departments.  

Consultations were also held with the Office of the Attorney General for combatting drug-related criminal activity (PROCUNAR) and the Financial Information Unit (UIF) of the Ministry of Justice. Discussions took place on matters of interest with representatives of the main federal law enforcement agencies (Federal Police, National Gendarmerie, Customs Service, the Coast Guard, and Airport Security Police (PSA)).

The mission visited a drug treatment centre at the Federal Prison Complex of Ezeiza and the "Casa Educativa Terapéutica (CET)", a community-based therapeutic centre, located in Villa Tranquila, Avellaneda, established to comprehensively address problematic drug use and promote access to health, education and work.  

The findings of the mission will be considered by the Board at its session in November 2016.

 

Mission to the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan

A high-level INCB mission visited the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan from 8 to 10 May 2016.  The mission was conducted by the President of the Board, Mr. Werner Sipp, accompanied by the Secretary of the Board and a member of the INCB secretariat. The purpose of the mission was to continue consultations with the Government of Afghanistan, which the Board had initiated in May 2000. At that time, INCB  concluded that the situation in the country, if left unattended, seriously endangered the aims of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961 and decided to invoke Article 14 of the 1961 Convention with a view to promote cooperative at the international level.

The mission was received by H. E. Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, Chief Executive of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan; the Minister of Counter Narcotics, H.E. Ms. Salamat Azimi; the Minister of Public Health, H.E. Dr. Ferozudin Feroz; and the Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock, H.E. Mr. Assadullah Zamir.  The President of the Board also held consultations with Mr. Mohammad Hanif Atmar, National Security Adviser to the President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan  and Mr. Mohammad Shaker Kargar, Special Envoy of the President for the Commonwealth of Independent States and Senior Adviser to the First Vice President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.  Consultations also took place with the Chair and members of the Parliamentary Commission on Counter Narcotics, the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations for Afghanistan, and representatives of international organisations and the international community.  During his short visit to Afghanistan, the President of the Board also undertook a visit to a treatment and rehabilitation centre accompanied by H.E. Ms. Azimi.

Deliberations focused on the current drug control situation, future prospects, the actions and initiatives of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan as well as the cooperation of the international community.

The findings of the mission will be presented to the Board at one of its future sessions in the course of 2016.

 

Mission to the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam

From 4 to 7 April 2016, a mission of the Board visited the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam. The mission was led by Ms. Jagjit Pavadia, Second Vice President of the Board, accompanied by Mr. Paul Rabbat, Chief of the Convention Evaluation Section of the INCB Secretariat. The objective of the mission was to discuss the implementation by the Socialist Republic Viet Nam of the three international drug control conventions.

The mission which was coordinated by the Standing Office on Drugs and Crime and held  high level talks with senior officials from the Vietnamese Government. Meetings were held with H.E. Mr Vu Duc Dam, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the National Committee for AIDS, Drugs and Prostitution Prevention and Control as well as senior government officials from the ministries of Foreign Affairs, Public Security, Health, Justice, Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, Industry and Trade, Information and Communication. While in the country, the mission also visited a drug treatment centre and held consultations with representatives of civil society groups.

The findings of the mission will be presented to the Board at its next session, scheduled to take place in May 2016. 

 

Mission to the Sultanate of Oman

The first mission of the INCB to the Sultanate of Oman was carried out from 3 to 5 April 2016. The mission was led by Major-General Ahmed Kamel Al-Din Samak, member of the Board accompanied by Ms. Hanifa Rebbani of the INCB secretariat. The objective of the mission was to discuss issues related to the Sultanate's implementation of the three international drug control treaties to which the Sultanate of Oman is party.

The mission held consultations with the Minister of Health, the Attorney General and senior officials from the Omani Government including, the Ministries of Health, Justice, Social Development and the Police Directorate. The mission met with senior officials at the Directorate General of Pharmaceutical Affairs and Drug Control and the National Committee for Narcotics and Psychotropic Substances Affairs. The mission also had the opportunity to visit a detoxification / rehabilitation centre for drug users as well as the oncology department of the Central Muscat Hospital. The mission visited the office of the World Health Organisation in Muscat.

Discussions focused on the trends in trafficking and abuse of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursors as well as measures taken or planned to address these issues, in particular, the legislative measures and administrative policies of drug control. Consultations also focused on issues related to the availability of controlled substances for medical needs such as opiates in palliative care as well as drug abuse treatment and rehabilitation services in the Sultanate.

The findings of the mission will be considered by the Board at is forthcoming 115 th to be held in May 2016, and will be reflected in the INCB Annual Report for 2016, which will be published in early 2017.

 

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