Region's harsh drug policy slammed by experts

05 May 2016
In the media

The Globe - Southeast Asia - Following a UN conference on drugs last month, countries in the region are being accused of sticking with ineffective and harmful anti-drug policies

Last month in New York, governments and civil society attended the UN’s General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) to discuss the global drug problem. There were high hopes, particularly as Latin American countries most affected by the so-called “War on Drugs” had strongly pushed for the session, that there could be a revolution in drug policy. What resulted was, at best, a small evolution in thinking.

“The UNGASS event itself clearly marked a shift in thinking and a widening gap between reform-minded countries and those that want to retain the status quo,” said Tom Blickman, programme coordinator for policy group Transnational Institute. “Unfortunately, most Southeast Asian countries and China belong to latter category and Asean is still committed to the unrealistic goal of a drug-free society.”

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