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UNODC Chief condemns in strongest terms callous killing of UNODC Consultants

Photo: UN Photo/Mark Garten

Following the killing of two UNODC consultants by unknown gunmen at Galkayo Airport in Puntland, Somalia, UNODC's Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, issued a statement condemning "in the strongest possible terms the...cruel and senseless attack." Mr. Fedotov also offered his "most profound condolences to the family, loved ones, friends and colleagues of these two individuals, who were so committed and dedicated to UNODC's work." [Read More]

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57th CND session ends with resolutions that signpost way forward in tackling illicit drugs

After seven days of discussion and debate on drug policy, the 57th Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) closed today with Member States adopting 11 resolutions. Addressing the assembled Member States in his closing speech, the Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Yury Fedotov, said that, over the past seven days, the world had gathered in Vienna to discuss the key challenges in drug policy.      [Read More]

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Drug consumption and trafficking in West Africa: Local impact, international implications

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (left) and former President of Nigeria and current Chair of the West Africa Commission on Drugs President Olusegun Obasanjo (right)Drug consumption and the impact of trafficking on governance, security and development in West Africa was highlighted at an event organized by the West Africa Commission on Drugs (WACD) and the International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC). Held on the side-lines of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND), the event was  addressed by UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov, the former President of Nigeria and current Chair of the WACD President Olusegun Obasanjo, and WACD Commissioner Mohammad-Mahmoud Ould Mohamedou.      [Read More]

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UNODC receives donation from the Japanese Drug Abuse Prevention Centre

Photo: UNODCUNODC signed today a funding agreement with the Japanese Drug Abuse Prevention Centre (DAPC) that provides grants to NGOs who work in the area of drug prevention. 

Speaking at the signing ceremony, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov said, "I would like to express my sincere appreciation for the close to US$5.5 million the DAPC has raised in support of UNODC's work during this time." He added that the need to raise awareness of the drug problem is more urgent than ever and that the UNODC/DAPC partnership shows just how much good work can be done when young people play an active role in these efforts.      [Read More]

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Cross-border cooperation key in addressing Central and West Asia's drug trafficking problem

Photo: UNODCThe trafficking in Afghan opiates poses serious challenges to public health and international security not only in the country's immediate region, but also in other parts of the world. Multilateral efforts facilitated by UNODC, such as its Regional Programme for Afghanistan and Neighbouring Countries, are strengthened by strategic alliances to counter the flow of drugs out of Afghanistan and by bringing together officials from the countries most affected by this illicit trade. One of these efforts is the Triangular Initiative formed by Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan.      [Read More]

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Joint Ministerial Statement stresses health, prevention and treatment in countering world drug problem

Member States issued a  Joint Ministerial Statement at the close of the High-level Review highlighting the importance of health, prevention and treatment, including protection against HIV, as envisaged by the conventions. In his closing statement, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov said, "I believe this Joint Ministerial Statement provides a strong basis to continue this forward-looking debate on the road to the UN General Assembly Special Session on the world drug problem in 2016."     [Read More]

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Commission on Narcotic Drugs opens its 57  th session in Vienna

Commission on Narcotic Drugs opens its 57th session in ViennaToday marks the start of the  High-Level segment of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) 57th session at the UN headquarters in Vienna, Austria, with the participation of delegates representing Member States, the civil society, and other stakeholders. The  meetings and events will continue next week (17-21 March) where a number of issues will be discussed. Among these are addressing the use of drugs through a health-based approach, regional efforts to reduce the supply of illegal drugs, the implementation of the international drug control treaties, the challenge posed by  new psychoactive substances, and many others.    [Read More]

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UNWTO, UNODC and UNESCO launch anti-trafficking campaign: 'Your Actions Count - Be a Responsible Traveller'

UNWTO, UNODC, UNESCO CampaignUNODC, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) have joined forces to promote a global campaign urging travellers to support the fight against a number of forms of trafficking. The Campaign was presented to the tourism sector at the International Tourism Bourse (ITB) in Berlin.   [Read More]

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UNODC signs new cooperative agreement with Bahrain

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (right) and the Minister of Interior of Bahrain Lieutenant General Sheikh Rashid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa (left)The Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Yury Fedotov, and the Minister of Interior of Bahrain, Lieutenant General Sheikh Rashid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, today signed a new memorandum of understanding (MoU) to enhance cooperation to counter illicit drug trafficking.  [Read More]

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UNODC/OSCE emphasize need for cooperation against drugs, crime, and terrorism

Meeting today senior staff from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Organization for Cooperation and Security in Europe (OSCE) reviewed results from their joint cooperation.   [Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director enhances partnership on visit to Oman, UAE, Bahrain

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov paid an official visit to the Sultanate of Oman, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the Kingdom of Bahrain to discuss strengthening UNODC initiatives in the Gulf region.   [Read More]

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"More must be done to confront drug trade, rise in domestic addiction," says UNODC Chief in meeting with Afghan Counter-Narcotics Minister

In a recent meeting with Afghan Counter-Narcotics Minister Din Mohammad Mobarez Rashidi, UNODC's Executive Director Yury Fedotov stressed that the illicit drug trade was a severe threat to public health, good governance and sustainable development in West and Central Asia as well as elsewhere. [Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director welcomes appointment of new Board of Trustees for UN Trust Fund for trafficking victims

Photo: UNODCUNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has welcomed the appointment of the members of the Board of Trustees of the United Nations Voluntary Trust Fund for Victims of Trafficking in Persons. Established by the General Assembly in July 2010, the Trust Fund supports organizations directly assisting victims of human trafficking. [Read More]

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UNODC chief briefs Security Council on drug and crime vulnerability in West Africa, Sahel

The importance of confronting illicit drugs in West Africa and the Sahel was underlined yesterday at a Security Council briefing. The event saw Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov, among others, deliver key statements on drug trafficking in West Africa and Sahel. [Read More]

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On International Migrants Day, UNODC chief says more should be done to stem tide of tragedies

International Migrants Day serves as a poignant reminder that 2013 was a lethal year for migrants.  Amid recurring accounts of tragedies at sea, in October the international community was particularly shocked when more than 360 migrants from Africa drowned trying to reach the Italian island of Lampedusa - the single deadliest migrant shipwreck on record.   [Read More]

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UNODC stresses the health dimension of drug use as Uruguay parliament passes legislation to legalize cannabis

The parliament of Uruguay has passed legislation to legalize the production, sale and consumption of marijuana for non-medical purposes. The move comes amid growing debate over international drug control policy in Latin America. Cannabis is controlled under the 1961 Convention on Narcotic Drugs, to which Uruguay is a party.  [Read More]

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Getting to zero on HIV and AIDS

On 1 December, UNODC commemorates World AIDS Day by remembering those who have fallen to AIDS, taking stock of years of hard work to curb the epidemic and having an honest look at what still needs to be done to achieve the three zeros - zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths. [Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director strengthens partnership on visit to Mexico

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov, on an official visit to Mexico on 27 and 28 November 2013, met with the new administration of President Peña Nieto to discuss global and regional issues related to drug control and the fight against transnational organized crime.  [Read More]

 

 

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Zero Corruption - 100% Development: UNODC and UNDP launch 2013 Anti-Corruption Day Campaign

A new global campaign to commemorate International Anti-corruption Day, 9 December, kicked off yesterday in Panama under the theme Zero Corruption - 100% Development.  The 2013 advocacy campaign was announced by UNODC and the UN Development Programme (UNDP), the two United Nations bodies leading global awareness campaigns against corruption since 2009.  [Read More]

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Corruption is the thief of economic and social development, says UNODC Chief at anti-corruption opening in Panama

"Corruption is the thief of economic and social development; stealing the opportunities of ordinary people to progress and to prosper," said UNODC Chief, Yury Fedotov, at the opening of the Fifth Session of the Conference of States Parties to the UN Convention against Corruption in Panama City - COSP5. [Read More]

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UNODC Chief holds talks with President, visits anti-human trafficking unit during Guatemala mission

"I welcome the work being undertaken by the Guatemalan government against transnational organized crime, including human trafficking. UNODC will continue to provide every possible technical support and assistance to the country," said the Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Yury Fedotov, after his 21 November meeting with the President of Guatemala, Otto Perez Molina. [Read More]

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UNODC chief designates Colombian international footballer Falcao as Goodwill Ambassador

Photo: UNODCYury Fedotov, UNODC Executive Director, has designated world-renowned Colombian footballer Radamel Falcao García Zárate as UNODC Goodwill Ambassador. Falcao, as he is known to legions of fans, is one of the best strikers in the world and currently plays for Monaco F.C. after enjoying many successful seasons with Atlético Madrid. [Read More]

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UNODC launches new PSA: 'Wildlife crime: Don't be a part of it!'

To highlight the urgent need to address the illegal trade in wildlfe, UNODC's Regional Office for Southeast Asia and the Pacific today launched a wildlife crime public service announcement (PSA) to raise awareness among young Asians that the buying, selling, and consuming of protected species is illegal and finances organized crime. [Read More]

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World's biggest anti-corruption gathering in Panama City next week spotlights corruption's devastating impact on development

The Fifth Session of the Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention against Corruption - COSP5 - will take place in Panama City from 25 to 29 November 2013. Held every two years, the Conference brings together more than 1,500 representatives from Member States, parliaments, inter-governmental organizations, civil society, the private sector and the media. [Read More]

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Weak rule of law and lack of good governance a major threat to development, says UNODC Executive Director

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov said today that investments in justice systems and the rule of law were "pre-requisites" for long-term prosperity. Mr. Fedotov made his comments in his keynote speech at the inaugural Bangkok Dialogue on the Rule of Law, organized by Thailand's Institute of Justice. [Read More]

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New UNODC SE Asia regional programme addresses transnational organized crime and downsides of regional integration

Photo: At the launch of UNODC's new Regional Programme for Southeast Asia (from left): Thai Minister of Justice Mr. Chaikasem Nitisiri, Mr. Yury Fedotov, UNODC Executive Director, Dr. Kittipong Kittayarak, Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Justice

The new UNODC Regional Programme for Southeast Asia and the Pacific was jointly launched today in Bangkok, Thailand, by UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov; HRH Princess Bajrakittiyabha Mahidol, Permanent Representative of Thailand to the UN in Vienna, and H.E. Mr. Chaikasem Nitisiri, Thailand's Minister of Justice. [Read More]

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Afghanistan opium crop cultivation rises a record 36 per cent, production up 49 per cent

Opium poppy cultivation in Afghanistan rose 36 per cent in 2013, a record high, according to the 2013 Afghanistan Opium Survey released today in Kabul by the Ministry of Counter Narcotics and UNODC. Meanwhile, opium production amounted to 5,500 tons, up by almost a half since 2012. [Read More]

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Nicolas Cage helps raise $185,000 for victims of human trafficking

The United Nations Voluntary Trust Fund for Victims of Trafficking in Persons yesterday received a $185,000 boost from the private sector at a fund-raising event in Vienna attended by acclaimed Hollywood star Nicolas Cage.  A specially designed "Blue Heart" carpet - an international symbol increasingly adopted in the fight against human trafficking - was auctioned at the event, as was another rug donated by Mr. Cage for that purpose. Mr. Cage signed these one-off works as a gesture of his support for this cause. [Read More]

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UNODC Goodwill Ambassador Nicolas Cage renews his appointment

Oscar-winning actor and film-maker Nicolas Cage today renewed his appointment as a UNODC Goodwill Ambassador for Global Justice. During a signing ceremony at UNODC's Headquarters in Vienna with Executive Director Yury Fedotov, Mr. Cage committed to a second tenure of two years to lend his support to UNODC as a Goodwill Ambassador. "Of all the experiences I have had in my life this has been the most humbling and challenging of responsibilities", said Mr. Cage. [Read More]

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ECOWAS countries, international community renew commitment to tackle transnational organized crime

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov paid a two-day visit to Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, where he addressed a high-level regional conference to strengthen support for the fight against organized crime and drugs in West Africa.  [Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director discusses crime prevention, criminal justice, corruption and drug control on official visit to Armenia

Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, completed an official two-day mission to Armenia with a final round of meetings that included discussions with  the President of the Republic of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan and the Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan. [Read More]

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UNODC chief, at UN General Assembly, takes part in dialogue on migration and human rights

Photo: UNODCSpeaking at the UN General Assembly's High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development, Yury Fedotov urged Member States to do more to protect migrants' rights in the fight against migrant smuggling and human trafficking. He noted that although there has been progress in efforts to combat these crimes, "it is nevertheless clear that more must be done to stop modern-day slavery and the abuse of migrants at the hands of smugglers". [Read More]

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UN crime body to combat online child abuse

The online exploitation of children is a growing international concern, with advances in technology facilitating their abuse. In Vienna this week a group of experts met to review the effects of new information technology on the abuse and exploitation of children, along with measures that have proven effective in combating it. [Read More]

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Wildlife trafficking is organized crime on a 'massive scale', warns UNODC head

UNODC's Executive Director Yury Fedotov called on states to strengthen global efforts to combat poaching and illicit wildlife trafficking. Speaking on the margins of the UN General Assembly, Mr. Fedotov warned that poaching and wildlife trafficking were transnational organized crime being carried out on a "massive scale". [Read More]

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Good governance, anti-corruption efforts integral to global development, says UNODC Chief

Now is the time to make good governance and anti-corruption an integral element of our global commitment to development said Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) on the margins of the 68th session of the UN General Assembly. [Read More]

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UNODC early warning system records rapid increase in legal highs in 2013

Photo: UNODCAmidst figures showing a sharp rise in the number of reported new psychoactive substances (NPS), international experts met last week to address this growing challenge. Over the past 12 months, the number of NPS reported to UNODC rose by 41 per cent, from 251 to 354, while countries reporting detection of these substances climbed from 70 to 90. [Read More]

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Prosecutors key in upholding rule of law, says UNODC Executive Director

Prosecutors play a critical role in strengthening rule of law and combating drugs and crime, said UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov at the annual conference of the International Association of Prosecutors in Moscow on 9 September 2013. [Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director calls for prevention, fair access to treatment on World Hepatitis Day

The Executive Director of UNODC, Yury Fedotov, speaking ahead of World Hepatitis Day on 28 July, stressed that viral hepatitis remains a serious health problem worldwide, and urged authorities to ensure that all victims, including injecting drug users and prisoners, get the care and treatment they need. [Read More]

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UNODC Chief, at ECOSOC panel, stresses need to promote rule of law, combat drugs, crime in post-2015 development agenda

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov, addressing a panel discussion of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) in Geneva, underscored the links between combating drugs and crime and achieving sustainable development. [Read More]

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UNODC chief meets with international security officials to discuss combating money laundering, securing transport

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov attended an international meeting of high-level officials dealing with security in Vladivostok, Russia, on 2 and 3 July 2013. On the margins of the event, he also met Nikolai Patrushev, Secretary of the Security Council of Russia, Meng Jianzhu, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, and Janet Napolitano, the Secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security. [Read More]

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New psychoactive substances pose severe challenges to public health systems, says UNODC Chief at high-level launch of World Drug Report 2013

UNODC's Executive Director Yury Fedotov warned at a special meeting of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) on 26 June that the use of new psychoactive substances (NPS) is growing. He said concerted action was needed to prevent the manufacture, trafficking and abuse of these substances. [Read More]

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UNODC signs joint plan of action with Japan for cooperation on Africa, Southeast Asia and Afghanistan

The Executive Director of UNODC, Yury Fedotov, welcomed the signing of a new Joint Plan of Action with Japan. Mr. Fedotov was in Japan to attend the Fifth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD V), which concluded in Yokohama on Monday, 3 June 2013. [Read More]

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Human trafficking is a dark stain on all our societies, says UNODC Executive Director in Minsk speech   

UNODC Executive Director paid a visit to the Republic of Belarus this week, where he met with President Alexander Lukashenko and other officials to discuss several issues, in particular human trafficking. Belarus has played a leading role in the fight against human trafficking within the United Nations. The country initiated an important UN resolution on "Improving the coordination of efforts against trafficking in persons,", which led to the review of the UN Global Plan of Action at the General Assembly two weeks ago.  [Read More]

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Executive-Director visits Turkmenistan, welcomes strong commitment of government to counter illicit drugs and crime

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov concluded an official visit to Turkmenistan to meet the President of Turkmenistan and senior government ministers. One of the key issues discussed was border control, especially given Turkmenistan's border with Afghanistan, which produces up to 90 per cent of the world's opium and heroin. "Turkmenistan's geographical position has led the country to play an essential role in countering illicit drugs and promoting the regional cooperation that is the foundation for this work," said Mr. Fedotov. [Read More]

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Azeri President visits Vienna, discusses international affairs with the Director General of UN Office in Vienna

President Ilham Heydar oglu Aliyev of the Republic of Azerbaijan visited the United Nations Office in Vienna (UNOV). In a meeting with Yury Fedotov, the Director General of UNOV, who is also the Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, the President showed great interest in the work of both organizations. Azerbaijan has maintained an active role in international affairs since it was elected as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for 2012-2013. [Read More]

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General Assembly reviews efforts to combat human trafficking

Policy-makers put human trafficking on center stage today at a High Level Meeting of the General Assembly chaired by the President of the GA Vuk Jeremić and in the presence of the Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The event was attended by 85 states, UNODC Goodwill Ambassador to Combat Trafficking in Persons, Mira Sorvino, as well as representatives from civil society. [Read More]

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Brazil joins Blue Heart Campaign against Human Trafficking

Brazil is the latest country to join the Blue Heart Campaign against Human Trafficking, with singer Ivete Sangalo appointed as a national UNODC Goodwill Ambassador and face of the campaign. There are millions of victims of human trafficking across the globe. The campaign aims to mobilize Brazilian society against this crime. [Read More]

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UNODC and Brazilian government launch Liaison and Partnership Office in Brazil

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has launched the new UNODC Liaison and Partnership Office in Brazil together with the Secretary of National Drug Policy of the Ministry of Justice, Vitore Maximiano.  Mr. Fedotov traveled to the country this week to formalize this new partnership with the Brazilian government: "The opening of a Liaison and Partnership Office in Brazil is a very important moment in the development of UNODC's integrated response to illicit drugs and transnational organized crime". [Read More]

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UNODC Chief highlights importance of social inclusion in crime prevention during visit to Police Pacification Unit in Rio de Janeiro

On the first day of his visit to Rio de Janeiro, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov visited on Tuesday a Police Pacification Unit (UPP) that has been serving the communities of Pavão-Pavãozinho/Cantagalo, in Ipanema, since December 2009. The UNODC Executive Director, was accompanied by Rio's Estate Secretary for Social Assistance and Human Rights, Zaqueu Teixeira, and the Sub-Secretary for International Relations of the Civil Cabinet, Pedro Spadalle. [Read More]

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Crime Commission closes on reminder that rule of law protects against violence, oppression and injustice

The 22nd Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice ended last week by emphasizing the importance of the rule of law and its role in supporting men, women and children across the world. [Read More]

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Honouring victims of terrorism worldwide

On the margins of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, UNODC's Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, the Spanish Vice-Minister of the Interior, Luis Aguilera, and Maria Del Mar Blanco - sister of a terrorism victim and president of the Victims of Terrorism Foundation in Spain - opened a photo exhibition in remembrance of those who have perished in acts of terrorism in the last decades from all over the world. [Read More]

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Heads of UNODC and CITES urge wildlife and forest offences to be treated as serious transnational organized crimes

At the current Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ), the heads of two United Nations bodies - the UN Office on Drugs and Crime and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora - called on countries to recognize wildlife and forest crimes as a serious form of organized crime and strengthen penalties against criminal syndicates and networks profiting from such illegal trade. [Read More]

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"We cannot allow the criminals to prosper from their crimes" says UNODC Executive Director

Opening the Twenty-Second session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, the Executive Director of UNODC, Yury Fedotov, focused on the impact of crime on social and economic development: "We know that weak and fragile states, especially those damaged by conflict, are more vulnerable to drugs and crime. And we know that crime undermines sustainable development, hinders access to education and employment, and drives away foreign and domestic investors." [Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director concludes official visit to Japan

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov paid an official visit to Japan this week. Asia-Pacific represents a key region for UNODC, and Japan is a crucial partner in the office's work against drugs, crime, corruption and terrorism. During his week-long visit, Mr. Fedotov met with several high-level national officials, including the Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, Prosecutor General, Minister of Justice, and the Director of General of Japanese Customs, among others. Mr. Fedotov also gave a lecture at the University of Tokyo. [Read More]

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UN Tourism and Crime bodies to call on tourists to play a role in reducing illicit trafficking

In the presence of the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) today agreed to launch a new public awareness campaign calling on tourists to help reduce demand for illicit goods and services linked to transnational organized crime. [Read More]

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UNODC awarded Spanish Gold Medal of Merit for its commitment to countering drug dependence

UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, today accepted on behalf of UNODC, the Gold Medal of the Order of Merit of the National Drug Plan. The prestigious award was given to UNODC by the Minister of Health, Social Services and Equality, Ana Mato Adrover, in front of Government staff and representatives of the media at the Ministry's headquarters in Madrid. [Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director Fedotov visits Bosnia and Herzegovina

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov completed a two-day mission today to meet the head and senior officials of ministries and agencies in Bosnia and Herzegovina. UNODC's work in the region is delivered through the Regional Programme for South-Eastern Europe, which is at the forefront of UNODC's efforts to counter the trafficking of illicit opiates from Afghanistan to the lucrative markets in western Europe via the Balkan route. [Read More]

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Fifty-sixth Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs opens in Vienna

11 March 2013 - The Fifty-sixth session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) kicks off today with over 1,000 representatives from Member States and civil society, as well as high level speakers and government ministers from across the globe. Policy-makers will meet in Vienna from 11 to 15 March to discuss issues ranging from international cooperation in combating drugs to public health and safety concerns, including the threat of new psychoactive substances. [Read More]

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UNODC marks International Women's Day

8 March 2013 - On the occasion of 8 March, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov is showing solidarity with the 'Stop Rape Now' campaign, run by the UN Action Against Sexual Violence. Moreover, in the Ukraine, UNODC is supporting the innovative Women 4 Women initiative which helps ensure that women have access to comprehensive HIV services. [Read More]

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Experts discuss the role of organized crime in the production and trade of fraudulent medicines

14 February 2013 - A high-level conference opened today in Vienna, Austria, on the illicit trafficking of fraudulent medicines - a form of transnational organized crime which threatens public safety. Fraudulent medicines have proven to be harmful and at times fatal, as well as an increasingly lucrative area for organized criminal networks. Worryingly, in parts of Asia, Africa and Latin America, fraudulent medicines are thought to amount to as much as 30 per cent of the market. UNODC currently estimates that the trafficking of fraudulent medicines from Asia to South-East Asia and Africa is a multi-billion dollar activity. [ Read More ]

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Actress Mira Sorvino extends her role as UNODC Goodwill Ambassador

UNODC Goodwill Ambassador Mira Sorvino (c) UNODC8 February 2013 - Academy Award-winning actress Mira Sorvino visited the Vienna International Centre and agreed to continue in her role as the UNODC Goodwill Ambassador to Combat Human Trafficking. Ms. Sorvino, who has played a very active role in promoting the plight of human trafficking victims since her initial appointment in February 2009, also met with UNODC staff to discuss the latest trends and issues surrounding this multi-billion dollar crime. "Ms. Sorvino has shown great commitment to the cause of human trafficking", said UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov. "We are grateful for her dedication over the past four years in support of UNODC-led initiatives aimed at a variety of audiences - from policy-makers to the creative community to the media - and for the enthusiasm in which she carries out her work." [ Read More ]

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Honouring corporate creativity and courage in the fight against human trafficking

29 January 2013  - During the closing ceremony of the World Economic Forum last week in Davos, Switzerland, Tristan Forster - CEO of the ethical recruitment and management company FSI Worldwide - was awarded the Business Leaders Award to Fight Human Trafficking. The Award merits private sector individuals who show leadership in finding creative and sustainable solutions to combat modern slavery across the globe. Human trafficking affects virtually every country in the world. According to the latest UNODC Global Report on Human Trafficking, victims from 136 different nationalities have been found in 118 destination countries, and there are at least 460 distinct trafficking flows crossing all continents and every region. Human trafficking is also big business for organized crime groups, with estimates running in the billions of dollars annually. [ Read More ]

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Placing health and welfare at the heart of drug policy

Photo: UNODC25 January 2013 - The key reason why countries decided to set up the UN drug control system was to reduce the public's exposure to the harmful health effects of drug use. Having witnessed the devastating effects of previous drug use epidemics, such as the Chinese opium epidemic of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, policymakers from across the world were convinced that a comprehensive international system was needed to protect their populations. [ Read More ]

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UNODC pays tribute to former INCB President Hamid Ghodse

9 January 2013 - Professor Hamid Ghodse, a member of the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) since 1992 and its President on six separate occasions, passed away on 27 December 2012 after a short illness. Throughout his time at the INCB, Professor Ghodse devoted himself to promoting international drug control and to the protection of people's health all over the world. [ Read More ]

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At Triangular Initiative Ministerial Meeting, UNODC Chief stresses regional cooperation in face of illicit drug threat

Photo: UNODC

18 December 2012 - Speaking at the end of a one-day mission to Tehran, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov noted the many challenges related to the flow of opiates from Afghanistan, but also highlighted the achievements of the Triangular Initiative, a body working to halt this movement. "The close collaboration between Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan is achieving operational successes. More than eight tons of drugs have been seized in 17 operations planned and coordinated by the Joint Planning Cell, which is one of the key features of the Triangular Initiative," said Mr. Fedotov. [ Read More ]

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UNODC Executive Director: To save the orangutan, we must break the links between illegal timber trade, corruption and transnational organized crime

The fate of orangutans like this baby are tied to Indonesia's forests (Photo courtesy © Nyaru Menteng Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre)

11 December 2012 - Environmental crimes, often financed and organized by transnational organized criminal groups, are destroying habitats and endangering species around the world. Noting UNODC estimates that up to 40 per cent of wood-products exported from East Asia and the Pacific may be produced from illegally harvested wood, the organization's Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, has urged policy makers to consider environmental crimes a serious form of transnational organized crime and called on them to endorse "radical changes", good governance and the strong involvement of the criminal justice system to save endangered species, communities and habitats. [ Read More ]

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For an ecology of the mind: blending drug rehab with nature conservation in Sumatra

Gories Mere (Head of BNN, in grey jacket) with UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (centre) at a village in south Sumatra which receives support from the rehabilitation project

11 December 2012 - Dev (not his real name) had been using drugs of increasing potency during his decade-long struggle with substance abuse. First alcohol. Then cannabis. Then crystal meth, which he snorted. Then heroin, which he injected. He lost his job. He was spiralling downwards. Desperate, his family admitted him to a drug treatment centre in Jakarta where he underwent detoxification and then a 6-month treatment. [ Read More ]

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UNODC Executive Director pledges continued UN support to Indonesia's anti-corruption efforts

Photo: UNODC

At a press event at Indonesia's Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov stressed the importance of a national anti-corruption strategy and the work done by KPK. Praising the country's efforts and the commitment of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to independent anti-corruption agencies, Mr. Fedotov offered UNODC's support to Indonesia to fight transnational crime and corruption, particularly as they relate to environmental crime. [ Read More ]


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Lao PDR "extremely vulnerable" to trafficking by transnational organized crime groups, says UNODC Executive Director

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov with students from the National University of Laos promoting drug prevention

Lao PDR's position at the hub of the Greater Mekong Subregion and its shared borders with Cambodia, China, Myanmar, Thailand and Viet Nam make it "extremely vulnerable" to the trafficking of people, illicit drugs and commodities by transnational organized crime groups, warned UNODC's Executive Director: "While economic growth and regional integration bring many positives, they also provide opportunities for transnational organized crime to expand". [ Read More ]


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UNODC Executive Director meets Viet Nam Deputy PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (left) with Viet Nam Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (right)

4 December 2012 - In his first ever official visit to Viet Nam, the Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Yury Fedotov met today with Mr Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Deputy Prime Minister of Viet Nam and Chairman of the National Committee on AIDS, Drugs and Prostitution Control.            [ Read More ]


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UNODC Executive Director Meets Daw Aung San Suu Kyi

Yury Fedotov, UNODC Executive Director, meets Nobel laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi at her residence in Yangon

1 December 2012 - In his first ever official visit to Southeast Asia, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov met today with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Member of Parliament, Chair of the Parliamentary Committee on Rule of Law and Tranquility, and Nobel laureate, at her residence in Nay Pyi Taw. [ Read More ]

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UNODC Chief visits Myanmar, offers UNODC support on poppy, stresses need for all countries to adopt UN Anti-Corruption Convention

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (left) with Myanmar Vice-President Dr. Sai Mauk Kham (right) in the national capital Nay Pyi Taw

1 December 2012 - Speaking after his meeting with Vice-President Dr. Sai Mauk Kham in the national capital Nay Pyi Taw, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov welcomed the Myanmar Government's request for UNODC support to help fight the trafficking of drugs throughout Southeast Asia.
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HIV epidemic levelling off, but still on the rise among injecting drug users and vulnerable prison populations

Red Ribbon - Vienna International Centre

30 November 2012 - Ahead of World AIDS Day 2012, UNODC's Executive Director Yury Fedotov praised achievements in the fight against HIV, but warned that epidemics among injecting drug users and prison populations remain a challenge, calling for bold and courageous resolve to address these. [ Read More ]

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UNODC Executive Director offers support to Thailand to fight "region's worsening organized crime and illicit drug trafficking problem"

Thai Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Surapong Tovichakchaikul, right, meets UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov at his office in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

29 November 2012 - Recognizing Thailand's pursuit of rule of law-based efforts to counter illicit drug and human trafficking, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov pledged the organization's support to the country's struggle against these human security threats. [ Read More ]

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"We must isolate piracy's ringleaders and financiers"

UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov (left) with the President of Mauritius, Kailash Purryag (right)

23 November 2012 - After visiting Seychelles, Kenya, and Somalia, the counter-piracy mission of UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, ended today in Mauritius. During the visit to East Africa, the UNODC Chief discussed counter-piracy efforts with heads of state and ministers, met with local counter-piracy and organized crime experts, and inspected prisons, and a training academy. [ Read More ]


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The fate of smuggled migrants: Confronting violence and exploitation

Photo: UNODC

21 November 2012 - UNODC's Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, spoke this week on combating violence against migrants, migrant workers and their families at the Sixth Summit of the Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) - the informal, Government-led initiative addressing interconnections on these key global issues. The event was also addressed by Peter Sutherland, the Secretary-General's Special Representative for Migration and Development who delivered a speech on behalf of the UN chief. [ Read More ]

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Governance and the rule of law in East Africa: UNODC's support for training and infrastructure in tackling piracy

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (left) with Puntland President Farole (right) laying foundation stones of Garowe prison

Good governance and the rule of law are two areas seen as crucial in building a safer world for all. However, in areas which have been devastated by war and unrest, public institutions which work to provide this security can be lacking. As part of UNODC's assistance in strengthening this, the organization's Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, this week visited Eastern Africa, including Puntland which for years suffered from civil war and is busy re-building its institutions with UNODC's assistance. [ Read More]

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Piracy in East Africa: How the Seychelles works to tackle a global issue

Yury Fedotov, UNODC Executive Director (right) with Joel Morgan, Seychelles Minister of Home Affairs (left)

Piracy in the Gulf of Aden and the waters along the Eastern Africa coastline has had a harmful effect on many areas both locally and globally. While the movement of international freight through this strategic location has been harmed, the everyday livelihoods of millions of locals have also suffered. In the Seychelles, key sectors such as tourism and fishing have been particularly impacted by piracy.       [ Read More ]


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UNODC chief discusses tackling corruption, crime and drug issues in Belgrade

Photo: UNODC24 October 2012 - During a visit to Serbia this week, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov met with several leaders to discuss issues related to transnational organized crime, corruption and illicit drugs. While in the capital Belgrade, the UN's anti-drug and -crime chief met with Serbia's Prime Minister/Minister of Interior, Ivica Dačić, as well as other key officials, including the Minister of Justice and Public Administration, Nikola Selaković, the Minister of Health, Slavica Djukic Dejanovic and representatives from the Anti-Corruption Agency and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. [ Read More ]

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UNODC in Serbia: Strengthening families, promoting drug prevention, treatment and care

Photo: UNODC23 October 2012 - Following the launch of UNODC's Regional Programme for South-East Europe earlier this year, Executive Director Yury Fedotov today visited the Serbian capital of Belgrade. His visit is part of UNODC's continuing work in the country and of that related to the Regional Programme for South Eastern Europe which aims to provide, among other things, assistance on drug prevention, treatment and care. [ Read More ]

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UNODC launches report to assist Member States to counter the use of the internet for terrorist purposes

Photo: UNODC22 October 2012 - UNODC today launched a publication to provide practical guidance to Member States for more effective investigation and prosecution of terrorist cases involving the use of the Internet. The publication, entitled " The use of the Internet for terrorist purposes", is the first of its kind and was produced in collaboration with the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force. [ Read More ]

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UNODC's new crime fighting tool turns lessons of the past into policies for the future

Digest of accumulated knowledge on transnational crime focuses on the criminal organizations and highlights the need to deprive them of their illegal profits

Digest of Organized Crime. Photo: UNODC16 October 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today announced the launch of a new tool in the fight against organized crime at an event also attended by the Italian Minister for Interior and other distinguished guests. The Digest of Organized Crime is based on an analysis of more than 200 cases and the accumulated knowledge of over 50 experts. The final tool will allow policy makers from around the world to understand the experiences of crime fighters, and to incorporate these experiences into their own strategies against the criminals and their networks. [ Read More ]

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UNODC to open a liaison and partnership office in Mexico

Photo: UNODC: Secretary of State of Mexico, Dr Alejandro Poiré Romero (left) with UNODC chief Yury Fedotov at the signing ceremony in Vienna15 October 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov and the Secretary of State of Mexico, Dr. Alejandro Poiré Romero, today signed a new agreement to boost cooperation between UNODC and the Government of Mexico in their ongoing efforts to fight transnational organized crime and drug trafficking. The agreement will see the establishment of a UNODC liaison and partnership office in Mexico, the first such office to be established by UNODC.  [ Read More ]

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Proceeds of transnational crime in billions, number of victims in millions, says UNODC chief

Crafting global approaches to crime and building cooperation: key themes at the sixth session of the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime

Photo: UNODC/Executive Director of UNODC Yury Fedotov (right) addesses the opening of the 6th Session of the Conference of Parties for the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime. On the left is President Danilo Türk of Slovenia.15 October 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today said that crime preyed on countries where the rule of law and other institutions were vulnerable to criminals. The remarks were made at the sixth session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime. [ Read More ]

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UNODC and Italy launch initiative to promote international standards on drug use prevention

Photo: UNODC9 October 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today launched a joint initiative in Rome between UNODC and Italy's Department for Anti-Drug Policies entitled "Prevention Strategy and Policymakers".

The initiative will provide access to UNODC international standards on drug use prevention, which are to be launched at a later date, as well as support evidence-based national drug prevention systems. The standards are being drafted to offer guidance on policies and interventions that can be used to prevent drug use and promote healthy lifestyles, particularly among young people. [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief presents transnational organized crime study for Central America and the Caribbean to Member States

Photo:UNODC28 September 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov presented a new UNODC study entitled Transnational Organized Crime in Central America and the Caribbean: A Threat Assessment to country representatives from the region. The event, held in New York, was attended by the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of Italy, Mr. Staffan De Mistura. The study examines the impact of the major trafficking flows of cocaine; women and children coerced into the sex trade; migrants smuggled for labour; and firearms. [ Read More ]

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On World Tourism Day, UNODC chief calls for more efforts to tackle trafficking for sexual exploitation

Photo: Girls in karaoke bar, Sihanoukville, Cambodia. © Mattia Insolera. Cambodian and ethnic Vietnamese women and girls are trafficked internally to Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and Sihanoukville for forced prostitution in brothels and karaoke bars.27 September 2012 - On the occasion of the World Tourism day marked today, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov highlighted the important role that the tourism industry can play in combating human trafficking for sexual and other exploitation. The UN World Tourism Organisation's Global Code of Ethics for Tourism calls on governments to combat exploitation through the national legislation of both the countries visited and the countries of the perpetrators of these acts, even when they are carried out abroad. [ Read More ]

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Central America confronts violence, our role is to offer assistance, says head of UNODC

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (right) meets with the President of Honduras, Porfirio Lobo Sosa on the margins of the 67th session of the General Assembly in New York25 September 2012 - After meeting the President of Honduras, Porfirio Lobo Sosa, UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, expressed his full support for the country's activities against illicit drugs and crime. In conversation with the President, Mr. Fedotov also reiterated UNODC's support for a revised Central American Security Strategy. He noted that countries cannot confront these issues alone and stressed the need for an integrated approach connecting Central America to other regions, while also promoting regional cooperation. [ Read More ]

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UNODC Executive Director voices commitment to the rule of law at General Assembly high level meeting

General Assembly24 September 2012 - The rule of law is central to the work of the United Nations. Today in New York, the General Assembly held the first-ever high-level meeting devoted exclusively to the rule of law, which is also a priority for the Secretary General. The high level meeting, under the theme "Delivery of justice", was addressed by the newly sworn in President of the 67th General Assembly Mr. Vuk Jeremić, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay, the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme Helen Clark and UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov, among other high level United Nations representatives.           [ Read More ]

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Where corruption flourishes, development and the rule of law fail, says UNODC Chief

Photo: A corruption complaint box in Leh Ladakh, India 24 September 2012 - Speaking at a high-level meeting of the 67th General Assembly in New York, UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, expressed concerns that corruption was undermining the rule of law by eroding democratic institutions essential for fair and equitable societies.

Mr. Fedotov said it was essential for governments and their partners to take drastic measures to combat corruption: "Without these measures, there can be no equity, no inclusivity, no fairness and no lasting social and economic development." [ Read More ]

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UNODC Executive Director stresses Montenegro is viable partner in fight against drugs and crime

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (left) addresses the press with Mr. Ivan Brajović, Minister of Interior for Montenegro5 September 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov paid his first official visit to Montenegro, during which he met with Prime Minister Mr. Igor Lukšić, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Justice, Mr. Duško Marković, Minister of Interior, Mr. Ivan Brajović, and Minister of Health, Mr. Miodrag Radunovića. During the visit, Mr. Fedotov discussed ways in which UNODC can collaborate with the government to fight illicit drug trafficking and organized crime. [ Read More ]

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Global Migration Group: acting together in a world on the move

Photo: IOM/ An IOM-supported convoy of 15 lorries carrying 1,222 African migrants from Sabha, southern Libya to Chad21 August 2012 - UNODC officially assumed the chairmanship of the Global Migration Group (GMG) on 1 July 2012, for a period of six months. The GMG is an inter-agency group bringing together heads of international organizations to promote the wider application of relevant international and regional instruments and norms relating to migration. [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief briefs Security Council on threats of drugs and crime in West Africa

Photo: A. Scotti: A cocaine seizure in Guinea Bissau12 July 2012 -During a briefing to the Security Council, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov expressed his concern about drugs and crime in West Africa.

Thirty tons of cocaine and almost 400 kg of heroin were trafficked in West Africa in 2011, while recently, methamphetamine laboratories were discovered in the region. According to the 2012 World Drug Report, cocaine trafficking in West Africa is estimated to generate some US$900 million in profit annually for criminal networks. But West Africa is no longer simply a transit route, it has also become a final destination. The report shows that there are now up to 2.3 million cocaine drug users in West and Central Africa, with the majority reported in West Africa. [ Read More ]

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UNODC head addresses ECOSOC special event on accountability and transparency

Photo: UNODC9 July 2012 - Addressing a special event devoted to promoting accountability and transparency to foster sustainable development, Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, said that preventing and combating corruption was the shared responsibility of every sector of society. "As an extremely conservative figure, UNODC and the World Bank estimate that up to US$40 billion is stolen from developing countries every year. The high cost of corruption is paid by ordinary citizens who cannot obtain basic services due to the misappropriation of funds," he said. [ Read More ]

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UNODC Executive Director commends UNODC terrorism survivor who will carry Olympic torch

Bianca Kopp with Mr. Fedotov6 July 2012 - Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC today met Bianca Kopp, a UNODC staff member, who will bear the London Olympic Torch on 15 July as it makes it way through the UK coastal town of Portsmouth. Kopp, an Austrian national, survived a terrorist attack on the United Nations House in Abuja, Nigeria on 26August 2011. The attack killed 25 people, including UNODC staff member Ingrid Midtgaard from Norway as well as 12 other United Nations staff members, and seriously injured more than 60 people. At the time of the attack, over 400 people were working in the building, which housed at least 26 United Nations humanitarian organizations and agencies. [ Read More ]

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UNODC Executive Director Meets Iranian Official Regarding Vice-President's Anti-Semitic Comments at an Event in Tehran on International Day Against Drug Abuse and Drug Trafficking

3 July 2012 - Soon after returning from New York, the UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, called for a meeting today with the Iranian chargé d'affaires about the anti-Semitic comments of Iranian Vice-President, Mohammad-Reza Rahimi at an event in Tehran on International Day Against Drug Abuse and Drug Trafficking. [ Read More ]

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UNODC head visits Inwood Community in New York to witness efforts against drug use

Photo: UNODC/Mr. Fedotov interacts with community members who have benefited from the support of UNIDOS Coalition in Post Avenue, Inwood section of Manhattan2 July 2012 - On June 28, UNODC Executive Director Mr. Yury Fedotov toured the Post Avenue Community in the Inwood section of Manhattan, New York City to witness how the local community is addressing drug use challenges.

The tour was organized by Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA), a national substance abuse prevention organization representing more than 5,000 community anti-drug coalitions across the United States. [ Read More ]

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2012 World Drug Report launched as General Assembly debates impact of drugs and crime on development

Photo: UNODC26 June 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today in New York launched the 2012 World Drug Report during a General Assembly thematic debate on the impact of drugs and crime on development.

The 2012 World Drug Report shows that global patterns of illicit drug use, production and health consequences largely remained stable in 2012, however opium production had rebounded to previous high levels in Afghanistan, the world's biggest opium producer. Looking at the global picture, lower overall levels of cultivation and production of opium and coca have been offset by rising levels of synthetic drug production [ Read More ].

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United Nations General Assembly to hold thematic debate on drugs, crime and development

Photo: UNODC22 June 2012 -The United Nations General Assembly will hold a thematic debate on drugs and crime as a threat to development on Tuesday 26 June in New York.

The event, convened on the UN International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, highlights the impact of drugs and crime on poverty alleviation and the Millennium Development Goals, and discusses ways of improving the international community's coordinated efforts to address the adverse impact of drugs and crime on development. Two panel discussions will focus on challenges in mainstreaming drug control and crime prevention into development initiatives. [ Read More ]

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Executive Director pays first visit to Albania

Photo: A border checkpoint in Albania where officials check for illicit goods and drugs11 June 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today made his first official visit to Albania. While in the capital city of Tirana, Mr. Fedotov met Sali Berisha, the Prime Minister, Edmond Haxhinasto, the deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Petrit Vasili, Minister of Health and Bujar Nishani, Minister of Interior. Mr. Fedotov was in the country to observe the measures Albania is undertaking to fight crime and to discuss the possibility of deepening its cooperation with UNODC. [ Read More ]

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Tajik Drug Control Agency marks another successful year

Photo: UNODC1 June 2012 - UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, today in the Tajik capital of Dushanbe attended a celebration to mark the 13th anniversary of the Tajikistan Drug Control Agency (DCA). The ceremony was led by the head of the Agency, Lt. Gen. Rustam Nazarov and attended by Lt. Gen. Beksultan Sarsekov, Director of the Central Asian Regional Information and Coordination Centre. [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief visits northern Afghan province of Badakhshan

Photo: UNAMA/Eric Kanalstein: Mr. Fedotov visits an opium poppy field in Badakshan31 May 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov visited a poppy field in Badakhshan province, north-eastern Afghanistan and saw firsthand, the eradication by the Counter Narcotics Police of Afghanistan and the hardships faced by poppy crop growers. [ Read More ].

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UNODC Chief visits transition house for women leaving prison in Kabul

Photo: UNAMA/Kanalstein: Yury Fedotov, UNODC chief, at the House of Hope in Kabul30 May 2012 - Emini, a twenty-year-old girl, is one of 14 female residents of the House of Hope, a Kabul based transitional house for women leaving prison. Pardoned by President Hamid Karzai's Decree on 8 March, she is one of the newest inhabitants of the house. Originally sentenced to three years in prison for running away from an abusive husband and his family, Emini hopes that her defense lawyer will help her to be granted a divorce, and that her father will forgive and allow her to return home. [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief and President Karzai of Afghanistan discuss national and regional counter-narcotics action

Photo: UNAMA/Eric Kanalstein: UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (left) meets with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai in Kabul29 May 2012 - Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, and Afghan President Hamid Karzai today discussed plans to boost national and regional counter-narcotics efforts, as well as ways to stem drug production.

Stressing the principle of "shared responsibility" as the only effective answer to the global menace of Afghan opiates, Mr. Fedotov highlighted that the Afghan Government and provincial governors had a crucial role to play. Strong, sustained political will at all levels of the Afghan leadership would be an essential part of the solution. [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief launches Afghanistan Country Programme

photo UNODC29 May 2012 - Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, together with Zarar Ahmad Moqbel Osmani, the MInister of Counter Narcotics of Afghanistan, launched a new UNODC Country Programme for Afghanistan (2012-2014) in Kabul yesterday. Primarily aimed to support the Government of Afghanistan to deliver an effective drugs and crime response, the Programme focuses on establishing alternative livelihoods for households dependent on illicit crop cultivation, drug demand reduction, and drug-related HIV prevention and treatment. [ Read More ] ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................

UNODC and partners launch regional programme for South-Eastern Europe

Photo/UNIS: UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (right) with delegates at the launch the regional programme for South Eastern Europe23 May 2012 - Today in Vienna, UNODC, representatives of South-Eastern European Member States and regional organizations launched the 2012-2015 regional programme framework to counter drug trafficking and organized crime.   [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief pays first official visit to Ukraine

photo UNODC21 May 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has begun a two-day official visit to Ukraine, his first to that country. While in the capital city of Kiev, Mr. Fedotov met the Speaker of the House, Vladimir Litvin and other officials of the Ukrainian government. [ Read More ] ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................


Top United Nations officials underscore need to combat organized crime in Central America

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) and General Assembly President Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser at the Assembly's debate on Central America. UN Photo/Evan Schneider

17 May 2012 - Senior United Nations officials yesterday drew the world's attention to threats posed by transnational organized crime and drug trafficking in Central America and called for concerted global efforts to combat the scourge, which they said was spreading to other regions. [ Read More ]

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UNODC, OSCE hold joint conference on the terrorist use of explosives

Photo: OSCE/ R-L: Yury Fedotov, UNODC Executive Director; Thomas Wuchte, Head of OSCE Anti-Terrorism Issues; and OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier, during a conference on improving the control of explosive substances, Vienna, 10 May 201210 May 2012 - A two-day conference aimed at improving the control of explosive substances in order to hinder terrorists' access to them, organized by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and UNODC, started in Vienna today. [ Read More ]

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Crime Commission ends with call for practical action against organized crime

Photo: UNODC 27 April 2012 - Speaking at the closure of the 21st Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov congratulated the Commission and delegates on the strength of the resolutions on migrants, piracy, and private security services, amongst others. [ Read More ]

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United Nations organizations cooperate to stamp out human trafficking and sex tourism

Photo: UNODC24 April 2012 (Vienna) - Taking a firm stand against human trafficking, especially child trafficking, in the tourism sector, the heads of two United Nations bodies today pledged to stamp out this hidden scourge through joint efforts.  Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), also called for concerted global action at every level of society. [ Read More ]

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Transnational crime threatens MDGs, Crime Commission told

Photo: UNODC23 April 2012 - The 21st Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice opened today with speakers acknowledging that transnational organized crime is one of the 21st century's key challenges and a threat to sustainable development and the rule of law. [ Read More ]

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UNODC and International Organization for Migration sign agreement for closer cooperation

Photo: UNODC: A boat used to smuggle migrants17 April 2012 - UNODC and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) today signed an agreement pledging closer cooperation to tackle human trafficking and migrant smuggling, and to improve border management, bearing in mind the cross-cutting theme of corruption. [ Read More ]

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UNODC and EU border management agency sign cooperation agreement

Frontex Executive Director Ilkka Laitinen (left) with UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov17 April 2012 - UNODC and Frontex, the European Union Agency for cooperation on border management, today signed a Working Arrangement aimed at strengthening cooperation between the two agencies in the field of crime prevention and human security. [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief addresses conference of the Central Asia Border Security Initiative

Photo: UNODC Central Asia: Drugs seized by the Mobile Deployment Team, Tajikistan17 April 2012 - Border management and security in Central Asia are major challenges for the region, and also directly affect other countries. To enhance border security in the region and beyond, ministers and senior officials from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, the Russian Federation, the United States, along with representatives of the European Union, and other international organizations, attended the Tenth Ministerial Conference of the Central Asia Border Security Initiative (CABSI), in Vienna, Austria. [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief discusses responses to HIV/ AIDS among drug users and prisoners

Photo: iStock13 April 2012 -  At a time of declining international aid flows to low income countries  home to a high number of people living with HIV, Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, yesterday addressed  the 36th Meeting of the UNAIDS Committee of Cosponsoring Organizations (CCO) in Geneva. "This is resulting in a devastating situation, particularly in those countries where HIV epidemics are concentrated among key population groups such as drug users", said Mr. Fedotov, adding that "life saving HIV services are closing down". [ Read More ]

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UNODC head briefs Swiss health minister on drug prevention and treatment

Doctor (Google Images)

12 April 2012 - The Executive Director of UNODC, Mr. Yury Fedotov, has briefed Mr. Pascal Strupler, State Secretary of Health of Switzerland, about the balanced health-centred approaches employed by his Office in the area of drug use prevention and the treatment of drug dependence. [ Read More ]

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UN General Assembly President calls for redoubled efforts to end human trafficking

Photo: UNODC

03 April 2012 - The President of the 66th United Nations General Assembly His Excellency Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser today called on Member States, civil society, the private sector and the media to step up efforts to bring an end to human trafficking, calling it "an appalling form of human rights abuse".

"Human trafficking denies individuals their dignity, reducing them to mere objects by shamelessly exploiting them," he said. [ Read More ]

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Senior UNODC and OSCE staff review past activities, plan for the future

Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Secretary General Lamberto Zannier (left) with UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov

30 March 2012 - Senior staff from UNODC and the Organization for Cooperation and Security in Europe (OSCE) met today to discuss ways to cooperate and coordinate their activities.

Opening the session, the Executive Director of UNODC, Yury Fedotov, stressed the importance of their two mandates and called on staff present to find ways that UNODC and OSCE can add value to each other's work. [ Read More ]

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UNODC, UNIDO join forces to promote development in rural communities dependent on drug crops

Photo: UNIDO Director-General Kandeh K. Yumkella (right) shakes hands with UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov at the signing ceremony

19 March 2012 - UNODC and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) will join forces to promote grass-roots development in poor rural communities dependent on the cultivation of illicit drug crops. [ Read More ]

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Commission on Narcotic Drugs concludes 2012 session with strong health focus

Photo: UNODC16 March 2012 - Wrapping up its week-long fifty-fifth session today in Vienna, the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) agreed a set of decisions to prevent illicit drug use, while strengthening national and regional responses to worrying drugs trends. [ Read More ]

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100 years of narcotics control

Photo: UNODC

14 March 2012 -  Delegates attending the 55th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs taking place in Vienna this week yesterday commemorated the centenary of the Hague Opium Convention signed in 1912.  Also known as the International Opium Convention, it formally established narcotics control as a fundamental element of international law. [ Read More ]

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Commission on Narcotic Drugs opens in Vienna with call for stronger networks to confront illicit drugs

Photo: UNODC

12 March 2012 ­- Stronger regional networks are vital in confronting the threat of illicit drugs, said Yury Fedotov, UNODC Executive Director, at the opening of the fifty-fifth session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, which is meeting in Vienna from 12 to 16 March. "We face a transnational threat of extraordinary proportions that amounts to $320 billion or some 0.5 per cent of global GDP", he stressed. [ Read More ]

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Brazil pledges annual contribution to strengthen UNODC work in the region

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (right) with Brazilian Minister of Justice José Eduardo Cardozo 12 March 2012 - The Government of Brazil has pledged to make an annual contribution of $2.5 million towards the running of the UNODC office in Brasilia. The Minister of Justice of Brazil, José Eduardo Cardozo, announced last Friday at a meeting with UNODC chief Yury Fedotov that the contribution for this year would be available immediately, noting that the planned transformation of the office to extend cooperation in the region would provide benefits beyond Brazil and throughout South America. [ Read More ]

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Japan contributes nearly $23 million to support UNODC work in Afghanistan and region

Photo: UNIS/UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (right) with the new Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations, Toshiro Ozawa, in Vienna

5 March 2012 - The Government of Japan is to supplement its voluntary funding to projects in Afghanistan and neighbouring countries by $13.6 million as part of its "Aid to Afghanistan" initiative. This follows some $9 million donated from Japan's Peacebuilding Grant in January to strengthen the Afghan criminal justice system, bringing the country's overall funding to UNODC to roughly $23 million.

[ Read More ]

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Ransom money laundered by pirates affects stability in the Horn of Africa, says UNODC chief

Alleged Somali pirates on trial in Mombasa, Kenya. Photo: UNODC22 February 2012 - In 2011, pirates made some $170 million in ransom money for hijacked vessels and their crews. That figure represents an increase since 2010, when ransoms paid amounted to over $110 million. Briefing the Security Council on Somalia, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov said: "Piracy money is also being reinvested into criminal activities that are not limited to piracy. Drugs, weapons and alcohol smuggling, as well as human trafficking, also benefit from the proceeds of piracy." [ Read More ]

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Executive Director: West Africa challenged by rapidly evolving transnational threats

22 February - UNODC head Yury Fedotov has underlined the importance of robust development and effective rule of law in reducing West Africa's vulnerability to drug trafficking and organized crime.  Briefing the Security Council in New York, Mr. Fedotov stressed the need for concerted and coordinated action in the face of rapidly evolving transnational threats.  "UNODC's approach has been strategic and tactical. It represents a multidimensional effort in acknowledgement of the multifaceted nature of the challenges," he said. [ Read More ]

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Secretary-General and Paris Pact partners affirm international commitment to curbing drug trafficking from Afghanistan

Paris Pact

16 February 2012 - Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today lent his support to comprehensive and concerted international action to stem the flow of opium and heroin from Afghanistan. At a high-level conference taking place today in Vienna, ministers stressed the need to reduce opium poppy cultivation, opiate production and drug trafficking and abuse while aiming to establish a broad international coalition to combat opiate trafficking. Among them were Mr. Alain Juppé, Minister of Foreign Affairs of France, and Mr. Sergey Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation. [ Read More ]

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Member States express strong support for "One-UN" approach by UNODC and other partners on transnational organized crime and drug trafficking

Illustration: UNODC: Transnational organized crime8 February 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov in New York briefed Ambassadors on the work of the UN Task Force on Transnational Organized Crime and Drug Trafficking.

Outlining the challenges faced by the Task Force, Mr. Fedotov said, "We face a complex and shifting criminal web, whose strands touch almost every country and cross every region. In many of the world's regions, transnational organized crime and drug trafficking have evolved into major threats to stability, the rule of law, good governance, and human rights." [ Read More ]

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Corruption: businesses have the power to effect positive change

Photo: bank 27 January 2012 - Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, has invited business leaders to intensify public-private partnerships to curb corruption. Delivering a keynote address to chief executives attending the 2012 World Economic Forum at the Swiss resort of Davos, Mr. Fedotov stressed the power of businesses to effect positive change. [ Read More ]


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UNODC chief announces a comprehensive study on cybercrime

Photo: cybercrime 26 January 2012 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov announced that the organization has initiated a comprehensive study on the problem of cybercrime and the responses to it by Member States, the international community and the private sector. [ Read More ]


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Children in the justice system need protection

Photo: Children 25 January 2011 - Millions of children all over the world suffer from violence. Studies reveal that children in the juvenile justice system, and in particular those deprived of their liberty, are especially vulnerable to violence. UNICEF estimates that over one million children are currently deprived of their liberty across the globe. [ Read More ]


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UNODC supports Kyrgyz anti-drug agency in curbing narcotics and organized crime

Photo: Kyrgyzstan 24 January 2012 - UNODC has boosted material, technical and logistical support for the State Service on Drug Control of Kyrgyzstan (SSDC) as a first step towards strengthening the agency's capacity to counter trafficking in illicit drugs and precursors (the chemicals needed to manufacture drugs). [ Read More ]


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UNODC and London-based watchmakers in timely partnership to help victims of human trafficking

Photo: London 17 January 2012 - Backes and Strauss, the London-based watchmakers, have decided to form a partnership with UNODC in connection with the launch of an exclusive line of "Victoria Blue Heart watches" to raise funds for victims of human trafficking. [ Read More ]


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Afghan opium prices soar as production rises

Photo: Afghan Opium 12 January 2012 - Vienna - The full Afghan Opium Survey for 2011 points to a dramatic 133 per cent increase in the farm-gate value of opium compared with 2010 (the summary findings of the survey were issued in September 2011).

[ Read More ]


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UNODC and OSCE join efforts to tackle crime and drugs

Photo: UNODC and OSCE

22 December 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov met with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Secretary General Lamberto Zannier to discuss a joint action plan that will see the two organizations cooperate to tackle organized crime and illicit drugs. [ Read More ]

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New UNODC paper sheds light on smuggling of migrants by sea

Photo: smuggling of migrants by sea

19 December 2011 - As the world marked International Migrants Day on 18 December, UNODC released an issue paper on the smuggling of migrants by sea. The paper covers the international legal framework relating to the smuggling of migrants by sea, current responses to and challenges posed by such smuggling and recommendations to strengthen responses [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief discusses drugs and crime challenges with Thai Royal Princess

Photo: Thai Royal Princess

15 December 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov met with Her Royal Highness Princess Bajrakitiyabha Mahidol of Thailand as she led a delegation to the reconvened twentieth Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice which took place in Vienna. [ Read More ]

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Opium cultivation and production in South-East Asia give cause for concern

Photo: Opium Survey

15 December 2011 -The 2011 South-East Asia Opium Survey launched today in Bangkok by UNODC points to "significant increases" in opium poppy cultivation in Myanmar and the Lao People's Democratic Republic (PDR). [ Read More ]

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We must remember victims of organized crime and drug trafficking, says UNODC chief

Photo: Drug Trafficking

12 December 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has called on the international community to remember the thousands of victims who suffer from the impact of drug trafficking and transnational crime world wide."Whether in Afghanistan, Libya, Somalia or Benin, these people look to us - the international community - for security and for sustainable development. We cannot afford to fail them," he said. [ Read More ]

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Secretary General calls for action by all to end scourge of corruption

Photo: ACT 9 December 2011 - As the world marks the International Anti-Corruption Day today, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called on all individuals to act against the cancer of corruption. "Although the poor may be marginalized by corruption, they will not be silenced. In events across the Arab world and beyond this year, ordinary people have joined their voices in denouncing corruption and demanding that governments combat this crime against democracy. Their protests have triggered changes on the international scene that could barely have been imagined just months previously," he said.     [ Read More ]

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UNODC strengthens counter-narcotics assistance to Afghanistan and neighbouring countries

Photo: Afghanistan7 December 2011 - High-level government ministers from Afghanistan and neighbouring countries today launched a regional UNODC programme for 2011- 2014 to boost coordinated counter-narcotics efforts and regional stability. The launch follows the International Conference on Afghanistan held in the German city of Bonn to set the future course for Afghanistan after the 2014 handover of power to the Afghan Government. [ Read More ]

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UNODC helps female injecting drug users to fight HIV

Photo: AIDS 1 December 2011 - World AIDS Day, commemorated today, is one of the most recognized international health days and a key opportunity to raise awareness and recognize victories in access to treatment and prevention services for those infected with HIV and AIDS. The theme for this year is "Getting to Zero: Zero New HIV Infections. Zero Discrimination and Zero AIDS-Related Deaths." [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief meets Afghan President, emphasizes regional cooperation ahead of Bonn II conference

Photo: UNODC 28 November 2011 - Yury Fedotov, UNODC Executive Director, has met President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan in Kabul ahead of the International Conference on Afghanistan taking place next week in Bonn. Given the enduring links between insecurity and opium poppy cultivation, Mr. Fedotov said he would welcome recognition of the importance of counter-narcotics at the Bonn conference. [ Read More ]

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Organized crime and drug trafficking major threats to international peace and security, UNODC head tells Security Council

Photo: UNODC23 November 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today called for coordinated and concerted efforts to address the threat of transnational organized crime.

Addressing the Security Council in New York, Mr. Fedotov said that transnational organized crime and drug trafficking are undermining security in many regions, and evolving into major threats to political and social stability, the rule of law, human rights, and economic development. [ Read More ]

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Victims of terrorism must be at heart of criminal justice response - UNODC guide

Image: Victims 23 November - A UNODC policy guide released yesterday offers advice on how to reform and improve criminal justice systems so that they are fairer and more sensitive to the needs of victims of terrorism and their families. [ Read More ]

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Head of UNODC pays tribute to late Minister of the Interior of Mexico Blake Mora and Vice-Minister Zamora Castro

Image: Blake Mora 14 November - A helicopter accident tragically claimed the lives of the Minister of the Interior of Mexico, Francisco Blake Mora, Vice-Minister Felipe de Jesus Zamora Castro and six other officials on 11 November. [ Read More ]

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Sustained efforts and cooperation in drug control essential to prevent suffering, says International Narcotics Control Board

Image: INCB 11 November 2011 - The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) held its 102nd session in Vienna this week to review efforts at the international and national levels to implement the international drug control conventions. [ Read More ]

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UNODC and UNHCR sign memorandum of understanding to combat human trafficking and migrant smuggling

Image: MoU 1 November 2011 - UNODC and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) have signed a memorandum of understanding aimed at furthering joint cooperation in combating human trafficking and migrant smuggling. The memorandum, which was signed by UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov and UNHCR High Commissioner António Guterres, is the first formal cooperation agreement between the two United Nations entities. [ Read More ]

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The cocaine gateway: West Africa and drug trafficking

Image: Cocaine Gateway 27 October 2011 - As West Africa, a major gateway for cocaine smuggled from South America into Europe, continues to attract traffickers, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has visited Guinea-Bissau, accompanied by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for West Africa, Said Djinnit. During his visit, Mr. Fedotov discussed several drug-related security issues with President Malam Bacai Sanhá and Prime Minister Carlos Gomes Junior. [ Read More ]

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Senegal enhances the capacity of Dakar airport to intercept illicit drugs

Senegal 26 October 2011 - Yury Fedotov, the Executive Director of UNODC, has launched the operation of a joint airport interdiction task force based in Dakar, a major air traffic hub in West Africa. The task force will contribute to the effectiveness of the Airport Communication Project (AIRCOP), which is aimed at improving airport intelligence and information-sharing. [ Read More ]

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Illicit money: how much is out there?

Photo: Illicit flows 25 October 2011 - Criminals, especially drug traffickers, may have laundered around $1.6 trillion, or 2.7 per cent of global GDP, in 2009, according to a new report by UNODC. This figure is consistent with the 2 to 5 per cent range previously established by the International Monetary Fund to estimate the scale of money-laundering. [ Read More ]

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Arab Spring highlights rejection of corruption and cry for integrity, says UNODC chief

Image: Arab Spring Fedotov 24 October 2011 - The millions of people involved in the Arab Spring have inspired the world and shown their hatred of corruption and corrupt societies, the head of UNODC, Yury Fedotov, said at the opening meeting of the fourth session of the Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention against Corruption, which is being held in Marrakech, Morocco, from 24 to 28 October to review the implementation of the Convention and assess worldwide efforts to combat corruption. [ Read More ]

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Drug trafficking tops agenda during Azerbaijan visit

Azerbaijan 17 October 2011 - The Executive Director of UNODC, Yury Fedotov, and the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Ilham Heydar oglu Aliyev, met this week to discuss several core issues during a visit by the Executive Director to the country's capital, Baku. [ Read More ]

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Opium production in Afghanistan shows increase; prices set to rise

Afghan Opium Survey 11 October 2011 - Opium poppy cultivation in Afghanistan reached 131,000 hectares in 2011, 7 per cent higher than in 2010, owing to insecurity and high prices, according to the summary findings of the 2011 Afghan Opium Survey released by the country's Ministry of Counter Narcotics and UNODC. [ Read More ]

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UNODC study shows that homicide rates are highest in parts of the Americas and Africa

Photo: UNODC 6 October 2011 - UNODC has released its first Global Study on Homicide, which shows that young men, particularly in Central and South America, the Caribbean and Central and Southern Africa, are at greatest risk of falling victim to intentional homicide but that women are at greatest risk of murder owing to domestic violence. There is evidence of rising homicide rates in Central America and the Caribbean, which are "near crisis point", according to the Study. [ Read More ]

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UNODC head inaugurates centre of excellence in statistics in Mexico

Image: INEGI01 October 2011 - During a mission to Mexico, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has inaugurated a centre established to assist in the collection of data relating to public security and justice in that country. The Centre of Excellence for Crime Statistics on Governance, Victims of Crime, Public Security and Justice will develop field surveys, share knowledge in the area of crime statistics and organize an annual international conference on statistics. [ Read More ]

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UNODC and Mexico build strategic alliance to counter organized crime

UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov (left) and the President of Mexico, Felipe Calderón (right)30 September 2011 - Speaking after a meeting with President of Mexico Felipe Calderón, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has highlighted the impact of organized crime on the region and increasingly on other parts of the world. "These criminals are responsible for the death and misery of people across the globe through their increasingly diversified illicit operations," said Mr. Fedotov. [ Read More ]

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Blue Heart Campaign and Caracol TV shine spotlight on human trafficking in Colombia

Photo: UNODC29 September 2011 - Colombia is the latest country to join the Blue Heart Campaign against Human Trafficking, with the signature of a "letter of intent" between UNODC and one of Colombia's biggest broadcasting corporations, Caracol. This corporate social responsibility agreement will heighten awareness of human trafficking among a wider audience, especially vulnerable groups such as displaced people and young women. [ Read More ]

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UNODC head tells President Santos that Colombia plays vital role in fighting drugs and crime

UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov with Colombian President, Juan Manuel Santos27 September 2011 - Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), has praised Colombia for demonstrating strong political will to counter transnational threats. On his first visit to that country, he thanked the President of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos, for his Government's generous funding for UNODC technical assistance projects in the area of illicit drugs, crime and terrorism prevention. That contribution, combined with contributions made by other donors, is worth around $250 million. [ Read More ]

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Colombia: from illicit drugs to sustainable livelihoods

26 September 2011 - Some 80,000 farmers' families in Colombia depend on illicit coca bush cultivation to survive. UNODC runs projects to wean farmers off illicit crop cultivation by encouraging them to pursue alternative livelihoods, which is the best way to end the lure of illicit crops. [ Read More ]

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Colombia: naval operations target submarines used to traffic drugs

Mr. Fedotov (centre) inspecting one of the submarines26 September - Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, has witnessed the latest methods employed by the Colombian navy to control maritime smuggling. Ten years ago, Colombia was by far the world's leading producer of cocaine; since then, the quantity of cocaine produced in that country has decreased significantly. [ Read More ]

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West Africa: another target for pirates?

Photo: UNODC24 September 2011 - Amid rising concerns that pirates are taking control of the waters off West Africa, Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, met Nassirou Bakou Arifari, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Benin , during the annual session of the General Assembly in New York. [ Read More ]

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UNODC in a new Egypt

Photo: UNODC22 September 2011 - At the first meeting of its kind between UNODC and Egyptian authorities since the country's change of Government earlier this year, Executive Director Yury Fedotov and Egypt's Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mohamed K. Amr, met in New York yesterday. [ Read More ]

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Drug control and crime prevention in Kyrgyzstan

Photo: UNODC19 September 2011 - While attending the sixty-sixth session of the United Nations General Assembly, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today met with Roza Otunbayeva, President of the Kyrgyz Republic, to discuss that country's partnership with UNODC. The discussion focused on strategy, activities to counter contemporary challenges and threats and ways in which to strengthen the rule of law, peace and stability in Kyrgyzstan. [ Read More ]

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UNODC chief shows solidarity with victims of terrorism on tenth anniversary of 9/11

Photo: ©Dean Calma: UNODC Chief Yury Fedotov (right) with Ambassador Glyn Davies, US Permanent Representative to the UN Office at Vienna

12 September 2011 - Yesterday, the world marked the tenth anniversary of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States of America. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said that 9/11 represented "an assault on humanity itself, and on the universal values of peace and dignity that the United Nations was created to promote and defend." At a ceremony in Vienna today, Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, poignantly reflected: "We remember the mothers, fathers, daughters and sons who did not come home that night. [ Read More ]

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UNODC Executive Director visits drug treatment centre in Tehran

Photo: UNODC: A patient at a drug treatment centre in Iran20 July 2011 - With 1.2 million drug-dependent users, the Islamic Republic of Iran has one of the most severe addiction problems in the world. Opiate addiction is equivalent to 2.26 per cent of the population aged 15-64 years. More than one fifth of them are injecting drug users. The Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran has been recognized as one of the pioneering countries in the region to offer opium substitution therapies, as well as running free HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment centres for drug users. [ Read More ]

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Shoring up a flood of drugs - Afghan heroin enters Iran's eastern border

Iranian border guard in action searching for traffickers and drugs in a small abandoned village along the deserted border of eastern Iran19 July 2011 -The border separating the Iranian province of Sistan and Baluchestan from the Islamic Republics of Afghanistan and Pakistan is today considered one of the major trafficking areas for heroin and opium. The Islamic Republic of Iran, as a whole, is responsible for the world's highest seizure rates with some 89 per cent of opium and 41 per cent of the global heroin and morphine being intercepted in that country. [ Read More ]

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UNODC head witnesses success of container programme in Panama

Photo: Panama PortThe port of Panama has seized more than 115 containers (110 holding counterfeit goods worth millions of dollars and five holding cocaine and heroin) under the Container Control Programme of UNODC and the World Customs Organization (WCO) since October 2009, when the Programme was established. UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov visited the port with Gloria Moreno de López, Director of Customs of Panama, on 30 June and witnessed the work of the Programme in the port's inspection area. [ Read More]

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UNODC and Panama inaugurate anti-corruption academy

Español

Photo: UNODC30 June 2011 - Mr. Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, Juan Carlos Varela, Vice-President and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Panama and Abigail Benzadón Cohen, Executive Secretary of the National Council for Transparency against Corruption of Panama, have signed an agreement to establish a regional anti-corruption academy in Panama City. The academy will offer specialized courses to equip prosecutors, judges, police officers and other public officials with skills in the prevention, detection and prosecution of corruption in public offices. [ Read More]

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Pope Benedict XVI and head of UNODC cover social and health challenges

Copyright - Photo Service: L'Osservatore Romano

The top United Nations official in the area of prevention of crime and drug abuse, Mr. Yury Fedotov, today met with Pope Benedict XVI as part of a visit to the Vatican to discuss some of the core issues currently affecting communities across the globe. Focusing on drug prevention, the promotion of healthy lifestyles, crime eradication, human trafficking and migrant smuggling, the audience with the head of the Catholic Church was aimed at elaborating and expanding on synergies with the Church. [ Read More]

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UNODC and Italy discuss crime and drug prevention

Photo: UNODC

Executive Director Yury Fedotov met with several senior Italian officials to discuss drug- and crime-related matters, including migrant smuggling into Southern Europe in light of events in North Africa. Meeting the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Franco Frattini, the Minister of Justice, Angelino Alfano, and the Under-Secretary of State of the Ministry of the Interior, Alfredo Mantovano, the Executive Director noted that the discussions were of critical importance to regional safety and security. [Read More]

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Space Days at the United Nations: Astronauts, Moon Rock and Space Tours at the Vienna International Centre

 

Space Exhibition at the Vienna International Centre31 May 2011 - In 2011, the United Nations, the Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the space community are celebrating two remarkable anniversaries: 50 years of human space flight and the 50th anniversary of the first session of the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UNCOPUOS). "Bringing the benefits of space to Earth is really what UNOOSA and the Committee are all about. We have come a long way in the past 50 years and I believe this is a reason to celebrate," Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna, says.[ Read More]

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Gift from the Government of Mongolia to the United Nations to be Inaugurated at Vienna International Centre

Gift from the Government of Mongolia to the United Nations12 May 2011 - A gift from the Government of Mongolia is to be unveiled in a special ceremony at the Vienna International Centre (VIC) today. The Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV) Yury Fedotov will inaugurate the gift which will be on display in the Rotunda of the VIC. The gift from the Mongolian Government is a gerege - a kind of diplomatic passport dating from the 13/14 th century. The gold-plated metal tablet was carried by Mongol officials and envoys allowing them to travel freely, be treated with respect and courtesy and be provided with food and horses.[ Read More]

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Host country reinforces support for UNODC

Photo: UNODC25 May 2011 - At their first meeting on Monday 23 May, newly appointed Austrian Minister for the Interior, Johanna Mikl-Leitner, and Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, discussed ways to address global threats more effectively. Congratulating the Minister on her appointment, Mr. Fedotov expressed his gratitude to Austria for its continuing political and financial support to his Office. "In recent years there has been significant progress in expanding the Office's range of activities", said Mr. Fedotov. "Today, Vienna is a key pillar in the United Nations family with a vast array of issues related to security and development", he added. Vienna hosts the third headquarters of the United Nations after New York and Geneva through UNODC and the United Nations Office at Vienna. [ Read More]

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UNODC teams up with IFRC to tackle humanitarian challenges

Photo: IFRCRC19 May 2011 - The Executive Director of UNODC, Yury Fedotov, and the Secretary General of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Bekele Geleta, have signed a memorandum of understanding to enhance responses to humanitarian challenges.

"I am pleased to sign the memorandum of understanding with IFRC, since the work of our two organizations in protecting vulnerable people is complementary and by working together we can both enhance the impact of our efforts to help people in need", said Mr. Fedotov at the Federation's headquarters in Geneva. [ Read More]

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UNODC and ITU join forces to make the Internet safer

Photo: UNODC19 May 2011 - Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, and Hamadan I. Touré, Secretary-General of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding at the ITU Headquarters in Geneva to strengthen security in the use of information and communication technologies (ICT). [ Read More]

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Fair play in sports: UNODC and International Olympic Committee give cheats a red card

Photo: UNODC20 May 2011 - Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, and Jacques Rogge, President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at the IOC's Lausanne Headquarters to fight corruption in sports. The initiative comes amid betting and doping scandals that have rocked the sporting world and disgraced star athletes. However, both institutions recognize the positive impact of sports, particularly on young people - sport promotes health and healthy people are a key indicator of development. [ Read More]

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Executive Director committed to putting health, human rights and crime control at the centre of the work of the United Nations

20 May 2011 - During a visit to Switzerland this week, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov forged closer cooperation with the heads of organizations active in many of the major fields of work of the United Nations, including health; labour; human rights; humanitarian action and disaster relief; saving endangered species; and development. He also met officials of the Government of Switzerland, a major UNODC donor. [ Read More]

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UNODC addresses G8 Ministers on cocaine trafficking

10 May 2011 - The issue of illicit drugs took centre stage at a G8+ Ministerial Meeting held on 9 and 10 May in Paris as representative countries met to enhance their efforts in the international fight against transatlantic cocaine trafficking. Addressing the G8 and other members at the meeting, the UN's anti-drugs chief, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov commented on what he called "the dramatic evolution of the international market for cocaine" over the past decade. [ Read More]

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UNODC mourns death of four United Nations staff and two pilots in Bolivia

08 May 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has expressed his deep sorrow at the loss of four UNODC colleagues and two Bolivian Air Force personnel killed in a plane crash in the Plurinational State of Bolivia. The sad news was confirmed by official Bolivian sources on Saturday 7 May following routine narcotic crop monitoring work that was being carried out in that country. [ Read More]

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G20 can mobilize private sector in global fight against corruption

27 April 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has called on public and private businesses to put in place urgent concrete measures to stem the tide of corruption. "As recent events in North Africa and the Middle East have demonstrated, corruption has the power to shake the very foundations of society. Even in regions where peace and prosperity prevail, corruption takes a heavy toll", said Mr. Fedotov. [ Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director notes key role of Russia in curbing drug trafficking

Photo: UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov (centre) with officials from the Domodedovo Training Centre in Moscow21 April 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov is paying an official visit to Moscow to meet with high-level Russian officials to discuss the challenges in dealing with the interrelated threats of drugs and crime. As the lead UN agency working with countries in tackling illicit drugs, transnational organized crime and terrorism, UNODC cooperates with states across the world in countering these threats to international safety and security.[ Read More]

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50 Years after Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations Signed, the City Still Plays Vital Role in International Relations

50 Years Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations14 April 2011 - This year marks 50 years of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. It was signed at a conference on 14 April 1961 and is an important milestone in the history of international relations. The Convention forms the bedrock of diplomacy and has been ratified by nearly every country in the world. [ Read More]

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Crime Commission to address protection of children from exploitation on the web

Photo: UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov11 April 2010 - Progress in international efforts to address transnational organized crime, including emerging issues such as cybercrime, will be the focus of the twentieth session of the United Nations Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice taking place in Vienna from 11 to 15 April. The Commission, which is the central body within the United Nations system providing policy guidance on crime prevention and criminal justice, will devote a special session on the misuse of technology in the abuse and exploitation of children. [ Read More]

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Director-General of United Nations Office at Vienna Marks 50th Anniversary of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations

Yury Fedotov, Director-General, UNOV6 April 2011 - At a special discussion panel to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, the Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV) Yury Fedotov described the Convention as the bedrock of diplomacy. [ Read More]

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Exhibition Opens in Vienna to Mark the 50th Anniversary of the First Human Space Flight by Russian Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin

Ambassador Alexander Zmeyevskiy (left) and Yury Fedotov4 April 2011 - An exhibition to mark the 50th anniversary of the historic first human space flight is being opened today at the Vienna International Centre (VIC). On 12 April 1961 Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first human to travel into space when orbited the Earth on Vostok-1 in a flight lasting 108 minutes. [ Read More]

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Drug dependence treatment and HIV prevention in Kenya

Photo: UNODC30 March 2011 - Globally, there are an estimated 16 million injecting drug users, around 3 million of whom live with HIV. As a major route of HIV transmission in many countries, the use of contaminated injecting equipment contributes up to 10 per cent of all HIV cases worldwide. As the lead UN agency in countering illicit drugs and in HIV and injecting drug use, UNODC works with countries to review and develop laws, policies and standards of care that enable them to put in place effective services for people who inject drugs. [Read More]

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Tackling piracy in East Africa

Photo: G.M. Roberts29 March 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has expressed his Office's commitment towards building prosecutorial capacity in Somaliland to assist the East African country's efforts in dealing with piracy in the region. During a series of meetings in East Africa, the UN's chief anti-crime official met with the President of Somaliland, Mr. Ahmed Mohamed Mohamoud and the Minister of Justice, Prof. Ismail Muumin to discuss UNODC's counter-piracy work in the region. Through enhancing ongoing efforts to deal with piracy, UNODC is set to assist authorities tackle this crime as well as look into addressing the underlying causes of piracy to achieve longer-term success. [Read More]

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Grass-roots organizations essential for creating healthy societies, says Executive Director

Photo: UNODC25 March 2011 - Enlisting the support of activists who represent the full spectrum of opinion on drug-related issues, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has stressed the importance of community and grass-roots initiatives in preventing drug abuse. "Drug control is not all about governments and law enforcement; it is also about families, teachers, youth leaders and mentors. Prevention starts with a community that cares about the vulnerable", he said. Listening to the groups' concerns, Mr. Fedotov said that community-level action must be stepped up. "Think globally, act locally", he urged. [Read More]

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Managing substance abuse within families

Photo: UNODC24 March 2011 - At the fifth-fourth session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND), held in Vienna from 21 to 25 March, UNODC - with the support of the Government of France - organized a side event entitled "Healthy and safe children through family skills training" to highlight the importance of family skills training programmes in preventing substance abuse among children and adolescents. [Read More]

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UNODC and Pakistan step up cooperation to confront grave challenges

Photo: UNODC23 March 2011 - UNODC and the Government of Pakistan have presented the key milestones achieved since the UNODC Country Programme for Pakistan was adopted in July 2010, while at the same time highlighting the continuing challenges posed by illicit drugs and related crime in that country and key policy frameworks developed in response. [Read More]

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Christopher Kennedy Lawford appointed as new UNODC Goodwill Ambassador

Photo: UNODC22 March 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today appointed renowned actor and author Christopher Kennedy Lawford as Goodwill Ambassador for Drug Dependence Treatment and Care. During his two-year appointment, Mr. Kennedy Lawford will raise public awareness of, and generate support for, UNODC global programmes aimed at drug demand reduction and drug dependence treatment and care. [Read More]

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Fifty-fourth session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs opens in Vienna

Photo: UNODC21 March 2011 ­- Calling for a vigorous, comprehensive and integrated approach to reducing drug demand, supply and trafficking, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today opened the fifty-fourth session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, which is meeting in Vienna from 21 to 25 March. [Read More]

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Envie de lire en français? Bienvenue sur notre nouveau site web!

Photo: UNODC18 March 2011 - UNODC is pleased to announce the launch of its French website, "L'ONUDC site français", in observance of the "International Day of Francophonie", which is marked annually on 19 March. Our French-speaking Web visitors can now find information about the work of UNODC more easily. [Read More]

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Crime and its deadly link with terrorism

Photo: UNODC17 March 2011 - Over 250 representatives from some 90 countries met in Vienna on 16 and 17 March at a symposium on terrorism to examine the growing links between crime and terrorism and to step up efforts against those interlinked threats. The symposium, organized by UNODC, comes at a time when terrorists are using increasingly diverse modi operandi and their operations are increasingly funded and sustained through the proceeds of crime. Drug trafficking, transnational organized crime, the movement of illicit firearms and money-laundering have all become integral parts of terrorism, which has an increasing presence in the criminal world. [Read More]

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Signing of the Book of Condolences at Japanese Permanent Mission

Ambassador Takeshi Nakane (left) and Yury Fedotov17 March 2011 - The Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV) Yury Fedotov expressing his sympathies to the Japanese Permanent Representative, Ambassador Takeshi Nakane, as he signed the Book of Condolences at the Permanent Mission of Japan today.[ Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director meets European Union officials and attends NATO briefing on mission to Brussels

Photo: NATO: Yury Fedotov, UNODC Executive Director (left) with NATO Deputy Secretary General Claudio Bisogniero15 March 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov has lauded the partnership between UNODC and the European Union in their common goal to address internal and external transnational issues of organized crime, illicit trafficking, corruption, money laundering and terrorism. He acknowledged the partnership not only for its policy exchanges but also on operational terms, evidenced by the large ongoing portfolio of joint UNODC projects co-funded by the European Community. [Read More]

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Hollywood actress and United Nations launch grants fund for human trafficking victims

Photo: UNODC08 March 2011 - A global industry worth approximately $32 billion. Millions of goods moved all the time. Is this one of today's great corporate success stories? Hardly - this is the illicit world of human trafficking, a major network which sees around 2.4 million women, children and men trapped in slave-like conditions at any given time. Through sexual exploitation, forced labour, domestic servitude and child begging, people the world over are held against their will. [Read More]

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UNODC and UN peacekeeping team up to combat drugs and crime in conflict zones

UN Photo/Evan Schneider: Alain Le Roy (left) and Yury Fedotov shake hands after signing pact to fight organized crime in conflict areas2 March 2011 - Aiming to strengthen their partnership to address organized crime in conflict and post-conflict zones, UNODC and the United Nations Department Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) yesterday signed a joint plan of action to further strengthen their cooperation in the battle against drugs and crime, and to proactively address threats to stability and security. [ Read More]

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Global alliance furthers commitment to fight wildlife and environmental crime

25 February 2011 - An emerging global alliance is meeting in Vienna to support requesting States in fighting powerful criminal syndicates that are plundering the world's flora and fauna. Consisting of five international agencies, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) Secretariat, INTERPOL, UNODC, the World Customs Organization and the World Bank, the International Consortium on Combating Wildlife Crime (ICWCC) is working to adopt a comprehensive and collaborative approach to help prevent illegal overexploitation of natural resources including endangered species. [ Read More]

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UNOV Director-General Yury Fedotov Meets with Federal President of Austria Heinz Fischer

25 February 2011 - "The Government of Austria has shown an enduring and admirable support for the United Nations and our work in Vienna," Yury Fedotov, Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV), said in a meeting with the Federal President of the Republic of Austria, Heinz Fischer, at the Hofburg Palace in Vienna on 25 February. "The Austrian commitment to multilateralism defined the country's unique role in mediating between East and West in the past, and between the developed and the developing world today.". [ Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director visits wildlife reserve in Abu Dhabi

Français / French

17 February 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov yesterday visited the Breeding Centre for Endangered Arabian Wildlife in Sharja, Abu Dhabi, which helps to save species such as the Arabian leopard and serves as a base for research on rare animals native to the Arabian Peninsula. The Centre has built strong ties with similar programmes, government departments and research institutions at the regional and international levels to promote the wildlife conservation and awareness of wildlife crime, such as the widespread trade in animal parts. [ Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director visits drug rehabilitation centre in Abu Dhabi

14 February 2011 - In view of the steady increase in the number of drug abusers in the Gulf region, especially among women and youth, authorities are having to invest in more efficient ways of offering services relating to prevention, treatment and awareness of drug abuse. The National Rehabilitation Centre of the United Arab Emirates was set up in 2002 as an independent treatment and rehabilitation centre to provide prevention, treatment and rehabilitation services to recovering drug abusers in Abu Dhabi while respecting cultural values. The Centre provides inpatient and outpatient treatment, health awareness education, professional training, research and rehabilitation. [ Read More]

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UNOV Director-General Yury Fedotov Meets with Mayor of Vienna Michael Häupl

UNOV Director-General Yury Fedotov Meets with Mayor of Vienna Michael Häupl

Russian

9 February 2011 - "Vienna is a major hub for advancing the United Nations agenda of peace and security, development and human rights," Yury Fedotov, Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV), said in a meeting with the Mayor of the City of Vienna, Michael Häupl, at Vienna City Hall on 9 February. "As a key venue for major international conferences and events, Vienna is an ideal location for UN initiatives to address global challenges," the Director-General stressed. [ Read More]

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Executive Director defines role of UNODC in new counter-piracy plan for Somalia

4 February 2011 - As piracy off the coast of Somalia seems to be outpacing the efforts of the international community to stem it, today sees the launch by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and international partners of an action plan to combat piracy. At IMO headquarters in London, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon commended IMO for its determination to spotlight the issue of piracy in 2011 and reiterated both his personal support and that of the United Nations as a whole for what is an important initiative. [ Read More]

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Businesses need to clean up their act

This opinion piece was first published on 27 January 2011 in the Financial Times.

Photo: UNODC27 January 2011 - If a bank robber makes off with millions of dollars, he can expect to feel the full force of the law. So why should big corporations be able to evade justice if caught engaging in corruption or other economic crimes? Is the private sector effectively buying its way out of trouble? As a number of recent high-profile cases show, this has been happening in too many countries. In 2009, a US multinational paid $579m to the US government to settle charges over the bribing of officials in an African country to win a contract. In 2008, a German industrial conglomerate paid €1bn in fines to the German and American governments for bribing officials. [ Read More ]

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UNODC and Mongolia to increase cooperation in fight against crime and drugs in East and Central Asia

Photo: UNODC17 January 2011 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov and the Minister of Justice and Home Affairs of Mongolia, Nyamdorj Tsend, today agreed to strengthen cooperation on the interrelated areas of drug control, crime prevention and international terrorism in East and Central Asia.

Mr. Fedotov noted: "Our increased cooperation is an important step in moving toward further tackling the threat of drugs, crime and terrorism. Not only are these considered grave dangers to the region and further afield, but they also present real issues to Mongolia's development and human security". [ Read More ]

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Private sector crucial in fight against human trafficking

Photo: UNODC11 December 2010 - With more than 2.4 million people held captive across the world, human trafficking has become one of today's major crimes and issues of social concern.

To find new ways to tackle this scourge, the 'End Human Trafficking Now: Enforcing the UN Protocol Luxor International Forum' kicked off today bringing together policy makers, civil society and business leaders from around the world. [ Read More ]

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Clean hands are good for business

Photo: UNODC: UNODC Corruption Campaign "Your NO Counts"9 December 2010 - On International Anti-Corruption Day, marked today, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov urges the private sector to become more active in the fight against corruption. As a crime that eats into company profits, increases prices for doing business and reduces the quality of goods and services, corruption undermines business confidence and corporate integrity and destroys the reputations of companies. [ Read More ]

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NGOs a vital link in fight against drugs, says UNODC Executive Director

Photo: UNODC: Mr. Michel Perron (left) with Mr. Yury Fedotov, UNODC Executive Director3 December 2010 - UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov today in Vienna welcomed the new chairperson of the Vienna NGO Committee on Drugs, Mr. Michel Perron. "To tackle drugs, we need to keep constant contact with on the ground knowledge and expertise. Our main partner NGOs provide that context and support our work from the local to the global level", said Mr. Fedotov.

The new chair, Mr. Perron, is the Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse a lead NGO in drug prevention and treatment. From 2007 to 2009, he led the " Beyond 2008", a global initiative undertaken in partnership with UNODC that engaged over 900 NGOs from 145 countries to review the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Drugs. [ Read More ]

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Tajikistan is the first line of defence in stemming Afghan drugs, says UNODC Executive Director

Photo: UNODC: Mr. Fedotov at the Tajik border1 December 2010 - As part of his visit to West and Central Asia, Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC yesterday met with Tajikistan officials to discuss increased cooperation to tackle drug trafficking.

"The flow of drugs from Afghanistan poses a serious threat to security and development throughout Central Asia, and Tajikistan is the first line of defence", said Mr. Fedotov. "We appreciate the difficulties Tajikistan faces in carrying out this dangerous and daunting task", he added. Current estimates show that 15 per cent of all Afghanistan's opiates and 20 per cent of heroin is trafficked through Tajikistan. [ Read More ]

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Putting people first: UNODC Executive Director visits drug treatment centre and women's prison in Afghanistan

Photo: UNODC Afghanistan29 November 2010 - On his first visit to Afghanistan since assuming duties as UNODC Executive Director in September, Mr. Yury Fedotov visited Jangalak Treatment Centre, in Kabul, Afghanistan, last week. The centre offers treatment and follow up care for recovering drug users.

"Drug use is a health problem, not a crime", said Mr. Fedotov. "Drug users are affected by a disease - addiction - and instead of punishment, what they need is treatment, care and social integration. They should not be stigmatized, repressed or further marginalized. Like all people, they deserve to be treated humanely. I believe in placing a strong emphasis on safeguarding health, human rights and justice", he added. [ Read More ]

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Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan strengthen anti-drug trafficking initiative

Photo: UNODC: Mr. Fedotov with officials at the Triangular Initiative meeting in Pakistan25 November 2010 - The Afghan, Iranian and Pakistani Ministers for drug control have adopted measures to strengthen their cooperation in addressing drug trafficking at the annual meeting of the UNODC-facilitated Triangular Initiative in Islamabad, Pakistan, earlier today. UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov praised the Governments' cooperation, which has been demonstrated by simultaneous operations conducted in 2009 and 2010. Six operations have taken place, leading to significant drug seizures. [ Read More ]

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Tackle organized crime to save the tiger, says UNODC Executive Director

Photo: Google images24 November 2010 - Global tiger numbers have plummeted from about 100,000 a century ago to about 3,200 to 3,500 today, and they continue to fall. On November 21, heads of state and senior diplomats from 11 key countries gathered in St. Petersburg, the first time world leaders have met, to discuss the fate of tigers. Backed by the World Bank and other international organizations including UNODC, the Tiger Summit has been billed as the last chance to save the tiger.

Addressing the summit, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov said, "The United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, has asked me to convey his strong support of this timely Forum. He welcomes this initiative and expects it to achieve tangible results". [ Read More ]

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Restoring rule of law can help solve piracy problem in Somalia, UNODC Executive Director tells Security Council

Photo: UNODC10 November 2010 - Presenting Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's latest report yesterday on piracy off the coast of Somalia, B. Lynn Pascoe, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, told the Security Council that military efforts alone would not deter pirates and called for simultaneous action on three fronts - deterrence, security and the rule of law, and development.

Also addressing the Council, Yury Fedotov, the Executive Director of UNODC, said more needed to be done to arrest and prosecute Somali pirates in the Horn of Africa and Indian Ocean. He called for support to expand his Office's regional programme to more countries; enable Somalia to upgrade its prisons and courts; and ensure that Somali pirates convicted in other countries can serve their sentences in their home country. [ Read More ]

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International cooperation can help tackle organized crime - UNODC head

UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov; Photo: UNODC

18 October 2010 - Violent crime, much of it drug related, is inflicting mayhem and scarring communities worldwide. Ten years after the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime was adopted in Palermo, the Conference of the Parties to the COnvention has gathered in Vienna to spur progress towards curbing a grave threat to security, development and public health. Stopping transnational organized crime, which has "ballooned to global proportions," must become an international priority, said Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC.

At the fifth session of the Conference, Governments will be addressing new and emerging forms of crime, such as cybercrime and trafficking in counterfeit medicines and endangered species. Illicit goods are sourced from one continent, trafficked across another and marketed in a third. The immensity of the profits they geenrate is staggering. In some cases, the value of those flows through regions surpasses the GDP of States. [Read More]

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The importance of statistics marked by UN Organizations in Vienna for the first Observance of World Statistics Day

The importance of statistics marked by United Nations Organizations in Vienna for the first Observance of World Statistics Day 13 October - Today three of the United Nations agencies based in Vienna along with the Austrian national statistics office began the celebrations to mark the forthcoming World Statistics Day (20 October 2010) with the official opening of an exhibition on statistics at the Vienna International Centre (VIC).

Speaking at the event the Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV) and Executive Director of UNODC Yury Fedotov said statistics showed us where we are making progress and where we need to do more and were a "powerful tool to accelerate development, to improve the lives of people, to protect the environment and to fight against global threats and challenges". [Read more]

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UN Awards City of Vienna for Excellence in Urban Planning

UN awards City of Vienna for excellence in urban planning 4 October - The UN today awarded the City of Vienna with the 2010 Scroll of Honour of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT), the UN's most prestigious award in city planning.

The award, which honours individuals and institutions instrumental in improving living conditions in towns and cities, was presented by the Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV), Yury Fedotov, in the presence of the Director of the UN-HABITAT Geneva Office, George Deikun, to Vice-Mayor Michael Ludwig and Mayor Michael Häupl at the historic "Roter Salon" at the Vienna City Hall. [Read more]

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Afghan opium production halves in 2010, according to UNODC annual survey

Yury Fedotov, Executive Director UNODC

Afghanistan's opium production halved in 2010 but soaring prices may encourage farmers to go back to opium cultivation, warned UNODC in its 2010 Afghan Opium Survey released today.

"This is good news but there is no room for false optimism; the market may again become lucrative for poppy-crop growers so we have to monitor the situation closely," said Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC. [Read More]

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UNODC Executive Director voices support for Millennium Development Goals

20 September - Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has urged the international community to keep its promise to help the world's most vulnerable people. At the United Nations summit in New York on progress towards the eight internationally agreed Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), Mr. Ban called for efforts to be stepped up by the target date of 2015.

For billions of people in poor countries, food, shelter and health are basic rights, which UNODC supports in many ways. [Read more]

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New UNODC Executive Director sets out immediate priorities

Mr. Fedotov addresses Vienna staff13 September - Yury Fedotov, the new Executive Director of UNODC, spelled out the initial priorities for his Office upon assuming duties today. Formerly Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation, Mr. Fedotov is also Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV), the third United Nations office after New York and Geneva.

"Clearly, in recent years there has been significant progress in expanding the UNODC range of action", said Mr. Fedotov. "Today, Vienna and our field network is recognized as a key pillar in the United Nations family, dealing with a vast array of issues related to security and development", he added. [Read more]

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Secretary-General introduces new Executive Director of UNODC

Photo: Mr. Yury Fedotov and Mr. Ban Ki-moon3 September 2010 - At a media encounter at the Austrian Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs yesterday, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon introduced Yury Fedotov, the new Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna and Executive Director of UNODC. [Read more]