Tag Archives: UNODC

With many plant and animal species ‘hanging on by a thread,’ UN urges action to tackle wildlife crime

UN urges action to tackle wildlife crimeThe report looks at eight case studies of species products sorted by seven industrial sectors that make use of wild sourced materials across the world. It builds on information taken from World WISE, a recently unveiled data platform that contains more than 164,000 seizures related to wildlife crime from 120 countries.

One of the key observations that the database illustrates is the extreme diversity of the illegal activity: nearly 7,000 species are included in the seizures, yet no single one represents more than 6 per cent of the total, nor does a single country constitute the source of more than 15 per cent of the seized shipments, UNODC said.

“This comprehensive global report is rooted in the best data and case studies available, is backed by in-depth analysis, and demonstrates a heightened sense of rigor in the way in which we report on wildlife crime,” emphasized CITES Secretary-General John E. Scanlon.

“The World Wildlife Crime Report shows the extensive involvement of transnational organized criminal groups in these highly destructive crimes and the pervasive impact of corruption, demonstrating that combating wildlife crime warrants even greater attention and resources at all levels,” he added.

hThe report includes an analysis of legal and illegal markets of wildlife and forest products, which UNODC said can be useful in addressing vulnerabilities in the legal trade and promote better global regulatory systems. It also highlights how gaps in legislation, law enforcement and criminal justice systems present serious issues.

“If we want to get serious about wildlife and forest crime, we must shore up our collective responses and close these gaps,” said Mr. Fedotov, noting that as with all forms of organized crime and trafficking, criminals will always look to exploit systems where they can.

The report, through analysis of trade sectors, markets and representative case studies, also sheds light on seven specific areas to illustrate the scale of wildlife and forest crime: seafood; pets, zoos and breeding; food, medicine and tonics; art, décor and jewellery; cosmetics and perfume; fashion; and furniture.

Tashkent conference highlights modern HIV prevention and treatment methods

World-AIDS-Day 2015Over 200 national and international specialists from Denmark, India, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands, Russia, Switzerland and the US have joined a conference in Tashkent to discuss modern approaches to the detection, prevention and treatment of HIV. The conference is being held in commemoration of World AIDS Day, marked annually on 1 December, and the 25th anniversary of the AIDS Service in Uzbekistan.

Keynote speakers at the start of the conference today, 1 December, included Deputy Minister of Health and Chief Sanitary Doctor of Uzbekistan, Saidmurod Saidaliyev, and UN Resident Coordinator in Uzbekistan, Stefan Priesner.

In his speech, Mr. Saidaliyev told those gathered about measures taken by the government to fight HIV/AIDS in Uzbekistan. Mr. Priesner, in his turn, highlighted the importance of joint efforts to address HIV/AIDS, research in this area, prevention of the virus, protection of vulnerable groups, increasing young people’s awareness of the risks of catching HIV as well as eliminating discrimination against people living with HIV.

During the two-day conference, experts and consultants will be working in three breakout sessions and focus on the following themes: “Epidemiology and prevention of HIV”, “Modern approaches to the detection, prevention and treatment of HIV”, and “The role of NGOs in implementing medico-psychosocial and HIV prevention programs”.

Conference participants are expected to develop new methods of boosting the effectiveness of efforts on early detection and prevention of the spread of HIV, improving treatment methods aimed at helping people living with HIV (PLHIV) regain working capacity and increasing life expectancy for PLHIV.

UNODC presents 2015 World Drug Report

An estimated 200 000 drug-related deaths occurred in 2013, and a total of 246 million people used an illicit drug that year, according to the 2015 World Drug Report of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

The report, presented today by the UNODC Regional Office for Central Asia, is a comprehensive overview of the latest developments in the world’s illicit drug markets by focusing on the production of, trafficking in and consumption of the main illicit drug types and their related health consequences.

20150626_111446UNODC Representative for Central Asia, Ashita Mittal, told journalists about the main findings of the 2015 World Drug Report: drug use prevalence remains stable around the world while access to drug and HIV treatment is still low.

Speaking on June 26, the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov said that, although drug use is stable around the world, only one out of six problem drug users, a total of 27 million worldwide, has access to treatment.

The 2015 World Drug Report thematic focus is on Alternative Development, a long-term strategy aimed at developing alternative sources of income for farmers dependent on illicit drug cultivation. The report states that, “approached holistically, alternative development has the potential to break the vicious cycle trapping poor farmers and to act as a catalyst for viable livelihoods that do not depend on illicit cultivation.”

20150626_112542The Director of the National Information and Analytical Center on Drug Control under the Cabinet of Ministers of Uzbekistan, Ahmed Mansurov, told journalists about measures Uzbekistan has taken to counter illicit drugs. Uzbekistan, which shares a border with Afghanistan, is at major risk from the transit of narcotics. In 2014, Uzbekistan’s law enforcement seized 2, 298 kilograms of drugs. According to Mansurov, 54 tonnes of illicit drugs were seized and 193,000 drug-related crimes were revealed from 1994 to 2014.  Mansurov also noted positive dynamics in the prevention and treatment of drug abuse as well as a decline in the number of drug addicts in recent years and absence of trends indicating that more young people have joined this category of people.

Mittal and Mansurov expressed hope that joint efforts will help to achieve better indicators through a holistic approach that includes countering drug trafficking and prevention and treatment of drug abuse. Local communities, mahallas, and the media have an important role to play in this approach.