MoU on combating illicit trafficking of narcotic drugs
General studies paper-3
- money-laundering and its prevention.
- linkages of organized crime with terrorism.
General Studies Paper 2-
- Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
What to study?
- United Nations International Drug Control Conventions,Salient features of the MoU, time-frame.
- Significance of the combating illicit trafficking, Efforts taken by the world community especially UN, why trafficking could not be dealt effectively. Drug trafficking’s link with organised crime, money laundering etc
Context: The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister, has approved the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Indonesia on combating illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and its precursors.
- It will come into force on the date of signing and will remain in effect for a period of five years.
- India has signed similar Conventions/MoUs/Agreements with the 37 countries.
Salient features of the MoU are as under:
- The MoU shall facilitate and enhance the cooperation between the two countries in combating illicit trafficking of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and its precursors as defined by the United Nations International Drug Control Conventions.
- Exchange of information on existing legal instruments of national legislation of both countries in combating the illicit trafficking of narcotic drugs psychotropic substances and its precursors.
- They would identify persons involved in illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and its precursors and essential chemicals, prevention of money laundering.
- Secrecy Clause-Under the MoU, there is a provision of maintaining the secrecy of information and documents obtained in accordance with this MoU.
United Nations Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances
There are currently three UN Conventions of 1961, 1971 and 1988 that are dealing with the issues of illicit traffic in narcotic drugs.
1961 -Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs
1971-Convention on Psychotropic Substances.
1988-United Nations Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances-
- The main goal of the 1988 convention is to fight organised crime by seizing drug assets and tracing of criminals.
- 1988 convention was signed 87 countries but was ratified only 20. There are 190 parties to this convention.
- These include 185 out of 193 United Nations member states.
Demand for Repeal of Convention
- In 2003, a European Parliament committee recommended repealing the 1988 Convention citing its ineffectiveness in controlling the multi-billion illicit drug trafficking industry. but the Convention has no termination clause, and therefore would remain in effect even if only one signatory remained.