1 Economics and Social Council (ECOSOC) Issue: Drug Trafficking in Conflict Zones Director: Ben Wagor Chair: Rebecca Moderators: Regine Ip, Shiurou Quek I. Committee Background ECOSOC (a.k.a. The United Nations Economic and Social) is in charge of the world s economic, social and environmental issues. It also is in charge of formulating policy recommendations about the member states and the UN. It is a founding UN Charter body that was create in 1946, and it is where the issues are discussed debated and is where policy recommendations are issued. It is one of the principal organs and it has responsibility for 70% of the human and financial resources of the entire UN system, and this includes the 14 specialized agencies, the 9 functional commissions, and the five regional commissions. ECOSOC has a total of 54 members and it has quite a few meetings each year. There is the Annual four week session in July, and each April, there is a meeting with Finance ministers that are in the committees of the IMF (International Monetary Fund) and the World Bank. The 54 members in ECOSOC are chosen by the General Assembly and these members have overlapping three-year term. The seats are chosen according to geographical representation and 14 of the seats are assigned to African States, 11 seats are for Asian States, 6 of the seats are for Eastern European States, ten seats are given to Latin American and the Caribbean States, and the remaining 13 seats are given to Western European and other States. The Current 54 members and the expiration date of memberships are: ECOSOC has a Bureau that is chosen by the Council in the beginning of each annual session. The Bureau has leadership functions and they are in charge of proposing the agendas, drawing up programs of work, and organizing each of the sessions. The Current President is Miloš Koterec. And he is the sixty-eighth President of the Economic and Social Council and he was elected on January tenth, He is the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Slovak Republic to the United Nations in New York. The Voting Procedure of ECOSOC is exactly the same as the General Assembly s Rules of Procedure. A Resolution requires a two-thirds majority and the largest number of votes. II. Introduction Drug trafficking is the illicit trade involved in the cultivation, manufacture, distribution and sale of substances subjected to drug prohibition laws. There are mainly two types of drug trafficking: one is smuggling of illicit
2 drugs through borders while the other one is when drugs are distributed within the nation. International smuggling usually involve individual drug smugglers to avoid security check through using unregistered boats, aircrafts and overland routes. Individual drugs smugglers are known as mules. A drug trafficking organization would recruit individuals to cross borders by carrying drugs. Basically the drug trafficking system is set up like a hierarchy, manufactures of drugs would recruit people to smuggle drugs through borders. Then these drugs would be handed over to people known as drug dealers that would connect them to the buyers, the money made by the drug dealers would be used to pay the drug smugglers. Then like wise the money that the drug smugglers receive would be used to pay the manufactures. A lot of times drug trafficking organizations would take advantage of local gangs and other local criminal organizations. The manufactures of illicit drugs are usually found in less developed countries (LCDS) and the produced products are trafficked to developed countries such as the United States of America. Drug trafficking has been a major problem in conflict zones in that drug trafficking elongates conflict and promotes conflict. Illegal organization would gain momentum from drug trafficking giving the organization greater power and expanding its control. When the organization reaches a certain extent, conflicts between gang members and governmental control peaks. This results in revolution or conflict within the country. While international conflict is affected by drug trafficking in that political chaos allows loopholes in borders, making drug trafficking easier. III. Description and Definition of the Issue Currently 380 tons of heroin is consumed worldwide. Of that total Myanmar and Lao are responsible for producing 50 tons while the rest is produced exclusively in Afghan. Out of the 380 tons 5 tons are consumed in Afghan and the remaining 375 are trafficked illicitly through neighboring countries. The Balkan and northern routes traffic heroin from Afghanistan to Russia and Western Europe through the Islamic republic of Iran, Turkey, Greece and Bulgaria across South-east Europe. While, the northern route runs through Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan to Kazakhstan and Russian Federation. This market is estimated to make 13 billion dollars annually. In 2007 and 2008 cocaine was used by million people worldwide, while 40 percent of world cocaine consumption was found in North America, 27 percent found in European Union and four European Free Trade association countries accounts for more than 25 percent of total consumption. Narcotics trafficked to the North American market are mostly transported from Colombia to Mexico or from Central America by sea to the United States and Canada. Cocaine found in the European market mostly originated from Colombia. Drug trafficking has become a very important issue over the past few years. Nations and the United Nations had combined to form solutions to solve the issue. Past such efforts such as the formation of United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC), United Nations convention against Illicit traffic in Narcotic Drug and Psychotropic substances, etc.. However trafficking in conflict zones remains a pressuring issue is a controversial
3 due to differed perspectives on the drug trafficking industry. For example countries such as Colombia, Mexico and Ecuador relies on the production and manufacturing of drugs to sustain economical benefit. And it has been proven that a growing percentage of nation due agree that illicit drug industry lead to economical growth. However because these illicit drug organizations often involve crime organizations it causes annual death rates to rise and high medical burden for those of countries with its people consuming drugs. In addition drug trafficking are a lot of the times the cause of conflict between countries and within a country. Drug traffickers exploit the weak government, porous borders, institutions, widespread poverty and corruption to their advantage. Because of a country s poor control it allows organized crime to step in and take control of a country s market. It engages the local people to grow illicit drugs and causes tension between countries. Which also promotes eternal crime rate do to drug related crimes. Drugs causing internal conflict is shown in Mexico s drug trafficking organizations and the Colombian trafficking organizations. IV. History of the Topic Drug trafficking started in the 1800s, when the British tried to control china through the opium trade. Ever since the 1800s drug trafficking has been pervasive and attempts that have been made to amend the issue are shown below: Title of Agreement Date of Entry into Force Final Resolutions of the International Opium Commission 1 Not Applicable International Opium Convention 11 February 1915 / 28 June 1919 Agreement concerning the Manufacture of, Internal Trade in, and Use of Prepared Opium 28 July 1926 International Opium Convention 25 September 1928 Convention for Limiting the Manufacture and Regulating the Distribution of Narcotic Drugs 3 9 July 1933 Agreement for the Control of Opium Smoking in the
4 Far East 22 April 1937 Convention for the Suppression of the Illicit Traffic in Dangerous Drugs Protocol amending the Agreements, Conventions and Protocols on Narcotic Drugs concluded at The Hague on 23 January 1912, at Geneva on 11 February 1925 and 19 February 1925 and 26 October December July 1931, at Bangkok on 27 November 1931, and at Geneva on 26 June 1936 Protocol Bringing under International Control Drugs outside the Scope of the Convention of 13 July 1931 for Limiting the Manufacture and Regulating the Distribution of Narcotic Drugs, as amended by the Protocol signed at Lake Success, New York, on 11 December 1946 Protocol for Limiting and Regulating the Cultivation of the Poppy Plant, the Production of, International and Wholesale Trade in, and Use of, Opium 1 December March 1963 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, December 1964 Convention on Psychotropic Substances 16 August 1976 Protocol amending the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, August 1975 United Nations Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances 11 November 1990 V. Points of View United states of America The United States is the biggest consumer of drugs and is often times the destination of illicit drugs. Due to the pervasive illicit drug consumption and trafficking it founded the drug enforcement administration (DEA) to track down illegal drug activities. The organization was able to track down several local drug operations and common wealth such Puerto Rico, Guam and U.S Virgin Islands. Laws have been implemented to stop drug
5 trafficking and those who have consumed illegal substances are sent to jail for longer sentences. Afghanistan Afghanistan is the greatest opium manufacturer of opium in the world surpassing Burma and Latin America. In 2007, ninety two percent of nonpharmaceutical-grade opiates found in the world could be traced back to Afghanistan. The amount of opium that is trafficked is estimated to have a value of 4 billion dollars. In December 2001, numbers of the countries in United Nations presume to develop the Afghanistan through provision for a new constitution and national elections. Thus a new constitution was established however the government has failed to enforce the constitution due to corrupt officials. Government officials often take bribes from illegal drug organizations and consequently drugs are still trafficked illegally. One of the main problems in Afghanistan is corruption. Mexico The Mexican drug war is an ongoing armed conflict among rival criminal organizations fighting over regional control against the Mexican government. In 2006 the goal for the government s military was to put down criminal organizations. Most of its forces are used to condemn criminal organizations rather than stop drug trafficking. The Mexican drug trafficking has existed several decades and Mexican drug cartels are now dominating the wholesales of illicit drug accounted for 90 percent of cocaine trade in the United States. The Mexican government is determined to reduce crime rates within the country, however it is doing little to prevent international drug trafficking issues. VI. Case studies Mexico Mexico drug related violence has caused the death of 60,000 people since People who have been killed include drug gang members, members of security forces and innocent bystanders. The problem with drug related violence is due to cartels that are being snuggled from South America to
6 the United States. The business of illicit cartel trade had been account for 13billion per year. The two main players involved in cartel trafficking were Sinaloa cartel and Zetas cartel. Zeta had conflicts within the organization and splits leaders from both main factions were killed. Miguel Angel Trevino Morals was captured in July 2013 and the marines killed Herberto Lazcano in October The former president Felipe Calderon deployed more than 50,00 troops and federal police against cartels. As a result many gang leaders were arrested and killed. However violence is still pervasive in Mexico. United states of America On March 2009 the United States government announced that efforts would be made to disrupt the illegal flow of weapons and drug profits from United States to Mexico. However in November 2010 a United States justice department report claimed that efforts to tackled gun-smuggling lacked focus and intelligence. The cooperation between Unites States agencies and with Mexican partners has been weak. Also in June 2011 the senate report suggested that 70 percent of firearms that are trafficked to Mexico came from the United States. VII. Possible solutions 1. Legalizing soft drugs such as marijuana to regulate the flow of drugs within country through governmental moderation. 2. Regulating international border control between countries through the help of transparency international to avoid smuggling across borders. 3. More developed countries should implement educational programs in less developed countries to regulate other job options rather than be part of the manufacturing and illicit drug trafficking. 4. Educating people in the risk of using drugs and being involved in the black market. 5. Establishing better data bases on the trafficking and regulation of drug activities through the help of United Nations. VIII. Current status Currently drug trafficking remains unresolved especially of those in conflict zones. This problem had been affecting both nations that are
7 engaged in conflict and the nations that are not involved in conflict. Violence caused due to narcotics remains one of the biggest world problems as terrorist organizations extends its control to different parts of the world. In addition because the drug rout is so complicated that it does not only affect those who is actively engaged but innocent bystanders. Past actions had been done in attempt to solve drug trafficking issues but not a lot of solutions had been made to target precisely the issue of drug trafficking in conflict zones. VIII. Conclusion Overall drug trafficking in conflict zones is a huge problem. Attempts have been made by nations to decrease drug trafficking issues and improve border security. However few have tackled the root cause of the issue that is the financial dependency of less developed countries on the cultivation of illicit drugs and lack of governmental control over criminal organizations. To fully solve the issue countries would have to work hand in hand together and develop a sustainable way for less developed countries to have better employment and economic rewards. While more extensive actions should also be taken to tackle and track down criminal organizations that exist in drug trafficking areas. X. Important questions 1. What past actions had your country done to solve the issue? 2. Is your country economically dependent on the drug market? 3. Is your country involved in any organizations against drug trafficking? 4. Is your country a manufacture or consumer of illicit drugs? 5. What past conflict had your country been involved in? 6. How had drug trafficking affected pre-existing conflict in your country?
8 XI. Bibliography "Drug Supply Reduction." UNODC. UNODC, n.d. Web. <http://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/drug_supply_reduction.html>. <http://www.parl.gc.ca/content/sen/committee/371/ille/library/historye.pdf>. "Q&A: Mexico's Drug-related Violence." BBC News. BBC, 16 July Web. 04 Oct <http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latinamerica >. "The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the Illicit Drug Trade." Drugs and Democracy. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Oct <http://www.tni.org/briefing/revolutionary-armed-forces-colombiafarc-and-illicit-drug-trade%20%20%20%20>. "UN Peacekeepers and Crime Fighters Team up to Combat Drugs, Crime in Conflict Zones." UN News Center. UN, 02 Mar Web. 04 Oct <http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?newsid=37666>.
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