DOJ Secretary Caparas reaffirms PH commitment to fight illicit drugs at UN general assembly special session

20 April 2016

Philippine Justice Secretary Emmanuel L. Caparas addressed the UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on the World Drug Problem today, reaffirming the Philippines’ “unwavering drive and strong efforts to win the war on illegal drugs under the guidance of an integrated and balanced strategy.”

Secretary Caparas reiterated the three basic tenets underlying the national commitment:

  • First, the Philippines’ local and national policies, initiatives and efforts against prohibited drugs are in faithful accordance with the 3 international conventions on drug control, in solidarity with ASEAN: (a) the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961 as amended by the 1972 Protocol; (b) the Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971; and (c) the UN Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances of 1988.
  • Second, the Philippines remains firm and resolute in its opposition to all calls to legalize controlled drugs.
  • Third, the Philippines does not support the imposition of capital punishment for drug related offenses or for any other criminal offense.

As set out in the 2009 Political Declaration Action Plan, the UNGASS on Drugs was due.

Almost one hundred Member States delivered interventions that outlined viable and effective alternatives for innovative and successful drug control policy.

Other members of the Philippine Delegation include Secretary Felipe L. Rojas, Jr., Chairman of the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB); Philippine Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ambassador Lourdes O. Yparraguirre; DDB Undersecretary Edgar Galvante; Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Assistant Secretary Rene Arnold M. Orbe; Department of Health (DOH) Assistant Secretary Nestor Santiago; Officials of the Philippine Permanent Mission to the UN (New York and Vienna); DOJ State Counsel Dioxenos Sulit and NoBox Transitions Director Ms. Inez Feria Jorge.

“Truly, our best laid plans will be ineffective, unless all nations unite against this foe. With this huge turnout of delegations at this special session, it is clear that we, as a global community, and despite the seeming divergence in our respective approaches, will prevail,” Secretary Caparas concluded.

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