INCREASING ADDICTION PROBLEMS & THE WAY OUT
The findings of the World Drug Report 2013 deliver important lessons for the forthcoming high-level review of the commitments that countries reaffirmed on the measures for drug control. These measures are laid out in the Political Declaration and Plan of Action on International Cooperation towards an Integrated and Balanced Strategy to Counter the World Drug Problem.
We have to admit that, globally, the demand for drugs has not been substantially reduced and that some challenges exist in the implementation of the drug control system, in the violence generated by trafficking in illicit drugs, in the fast evolving nature of new psychoactive substances, and in those national legislative measures which may result in a violation of human rights. The real issue is not to amend the Conventions, but to implement them according to their underlying spirit.
While intensified competition in trafficking in cocaine has led to growing levels of violence in the world, the problem will not be resolved if drugs are legalized. Organized crime is highly adaptive. It will simply move to other businesses that are equally profitable and violent.
As experience has shown, neither supply reduction nor demand reduction on their own are able to solve the problem. For this reason, a more balanced approach in dealing with the drug problem is a necessity. This includes more serious efforts on prevention and treatment, not only in terms of political statements, but also in terms of funds dedicated for these purposes.