Belgrade joined ECAD in 1996.
A DRUG-FREE EUROPE
The abuse of illegal drugs is a growing problem all over Europe. Various actions are taken by the European Union, the member states and capitals, cities and municipalities to counteract the problems. However, there is a lack of a common strategy and common goals in the combat against drugs. In addition, some countries and cities in Europe are actively advocating the legalisation of drugs and promote a policy which actively undermines other countries' efforts to limit supply and demand of drugs.
Europe has become a centre for drug trafficking, distribution and consumption of drugs. The spread of drugs is the result of a shattered and resigned and often reactionary policy. Millions of Europeans are affected directly by this policy as drug addicts, parents, relatives or victims of crimes. Drugs claim many victims and cause rejection and suffering.
There can be no other goal than a drug-free Europe. Such a goal is neither utopian, nor impossible. Too often, however politicians and others seem to act according to what they think is possible to do, rather than what is necessary to do.
Comprehensive efforts to combat tobacco is now under way in various countries, including presentation of up-to-date research, lawsuits against the tobacco industry, bans on advertising, sampling and sponsorship. It is necessary to co-ordinate and intensify the combat against drugs in a similar way. To achieve this, there is great demand for general agreement and support regarding the appropriate measures.
Offensive against drugs
Countries in Western Europe still have good financial means and other resources to prevent and combat drugs and the use of drugs. It is necessary to mobilise capitals, regional capitals, cities and municipalities all over Europe in the combat against drugs and in efforts to use existing resources as effectively as possible.
Adherence to the United Nations Conventions on Drugs
All nations must pledge to adhere to the United Nations' Conventions. This has to be done and monitored in a strict way.
Cannabis products are narcotic drugs
All forms of differentiation between so-called "soft" and so-called "hard" drugs must cease. The use of cannabis is detrimental to the health, causes passivity and is addictive. Cannabis and certain other drugs, in some countries regarded as being "soft" should be viewed as other types of narcotic substances in control policy, rehabilitation and preventive measures.
Stop commercial outlets for narcotic drugs
Commercial outlets for narcotic drugs, including coffee shops, and other open drug markets or drug scenes in European cities must be closed immediately. Police must be given the authority to act in order to stop the open commercial outlets quickly and effectively.
Put an end to all legal distribution of narcotic drugs
The so called "scientific" projects for distribution of heroin is nothing but an attempt to legalise drugs through the back door . This must be prevented by authorising the United Nations Drug Control Programme (UNDCP) to withdraw all import licenses for heroin, when the heroin is intended for use by drug addicts.
A united European leadership against drugs
- A drug-political centre might be established where authorities and non-governmental organisations co-operate on various measures against drugs. Such a centre could be a joint venture between the European Union and the Council of Europe to make it possible for a majority of European countries to participate.
- One of the most important tasks of such a centre could be to function as a clearinghouse for knowledge and support of research about the damaging effects of drugs on the individual and society. The information could be actively distributed and presented through booklets, seminars and other information activities.
- Non-governmental organisations need to be activated. Organisations of various kinds should be called upon to sign a proclamation against drugs and commit themselves to act against drugs and drug abuse. Prime Ministers and/or Presidents of various countries should be urged to express clear support for a restrictive drug policy.
- Preventive measures. Each European school could design an action plan on how to achieve a drug-free school, and schools could be encouraged to arrange thematic weeks against drugs. Cities could be given financial, and other, help to start local action groups against drugs and crime.
- Young people at risk. Each town and municipality could create an action plan for early discovery of young people experimenting with drugs. Co-operation between child-care services, schools, youth centres, the social services, police, institutions for child psychiatry and others could be developed.
- Creation of national, regional and local co-operation groups against drugs should be encouraged. These groups could head the local efforts to carry out the national actionable programmes.
- All age groups should have access to support and rehabilitation. Larger cities ought to establish specialised facilities, which could co-ordinate local efforts and provide detailed knowledge about drug addiction and drug addicts.
- Offensive action against drug markets. Police ought to intensify their measures against drug dealing aiming at total elimination of drug dealing in the streets, restaurants, clubs etc. Police could be given special education and resources to achieve such a goal.
- Offensive action against drugs in night-clubs, discos and similar establishments through co-operation with the owners and organisers of special events. Stickers could be distributed and displayed at various establishments to show that drugs are not accepted and that the establishments co-operate with police and others to counteract the use of and dealing in drugs.
- Drug-free prisons. Every imprisoned drug addict should have access to drug-free wards with special rehabilitation programmes.
- Customs should be reinforced. Customs ought to be given more resources to make border controls more effective.
- New legislation. It would be important to issue guidelines enabling E3uropean states to implement a legislation aiming at prohibiting consumption of narcotic drugs and giving the police more effective possibilities to discover and stop drug abuse, primarily among young people.