Crisis and division at UN drug summit: Unprecedented pro-reform coalition led by Colombia challenges “war on drugs”

Thursday 14 March 2024, Vienna (Austria) - For the first time since 2019, world leaders gathered in Vienna today to assess the state of international drug policy, amidst a global drugs crisis that claims hundreds of thousands of lives every year, and drives systematic violations of human rights.

In an unprecedented development, a coalition of 60 countries led by Colombia took the floor at the opening of the event to call for the reform of the international drug control system, which has remained unchanged since the height of the “war on drugs”. The joint statement sounded the alarm on the catastrophic consequences of punitive drug policies, which fuel violence, corruption and environmental devastation, whilst undermining health, development and human rights.


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