The 24th Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ) will take place from 18-22 May 2015, in Vienna, Austria. This year's meeting follows the recently-held 13th Crime Congress in Qatar, with the CCPCJ aiming to advance the implementation of the resultant Doha Declaration and discuss how this can contribute to the rule of law and sustainable development in the UN's post-2015 agenda.
There are currently nine draft resolutions before the CCPCJ on subjects as varied as trafficking in cultural property and the treatment of prisoners that were also the focus of the Doha Declaration. By passing these resolutions, the Crime Commission is seeking to ensure that the essential elements of the Doha Declaration become fully operational in order to benefit countries.
19 April 2015 - In closing the 13th Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in Doha today, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov said that the event had set a very high bar for the future, and that the key task now was to turn the Congress's Declaration into action.
"This Congress has provided a solid platform for the international community to recognize the tangible links between the rule of law and sustainable development. We must build on those links as we set our sustainable development agenda for the next 15 years," he said.
Mr. Fedotov noted the Congress was the first to have the UN Secretary General, the President of the General Assembly and the President of the Economic and Social Council in attendance.
At any given time, over 10 million people worldwide are in prison. With this, prison overcrowding has reached epidemic proportions in many countries - an issue raised at a side event during the 13th Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in Doha.
"Prison overcrowding can be considered a symptom of a malfunctioning justice system", noted Piera Barzano, Senior Regional Advisor of the Justice Section at UNODC. "The problems of overcrowding have to be dealt with by the prison administration, although the solutions are seldom within their reach." Ms. Barzano noted several reinforcing reasons that may lead to prison overcrowding, including causes not confined to the limits of criminal justice but that extend to other spheres of State responsibility such as welfare policy, access to health services, education, and employment.
The Indian Ocean could become a haven for criminal activity, participants heard at an event held at the 13th Crime Congress for Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in Doha. "Recent research conducted by the Global Maritime Crime Programme indicates an increase in Dhow traffic between known departure points for heroin trafficking and the east coast of Africa and South Asia, with traffickers adopting innovative concealment methods and using several drop-off points to smaller vessels," said UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov.
To counter this, more robust responses to maritime drug trafficking were needed from the international community he said. Comparing the fight against crime on the high seas with that on land, Mr. Fedotov underscored it was imperative that the maritime domain was not ignored.
The UN Trust Fund for Victims of Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, helps trafficking victims reclaim their dignity and their lives, an audience heard today at a high-level event held on the margins of the 13th Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice.
In his remarks, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov said that the UN Trust Fund was helping today's victims become tomorrow's survivors. "Some two thousand victims annually benefitted from direct assistance, including provision of shelter, basic health services, vocational training and schooling, as well as psychosocial, legal and economic support."