MFA Nasser Bourita takes part in a virtual Ministerial meeting to launch a Global Coalition to address Synthetic Drug Threats

10/07/2023 176

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation, and Moroccan Expatriates, Mr. Nasser Bourita, took part, on July 7, 2023 by videoconference, in a virtual Ministerial meeting to launch a Global Coalition to address Synthetic Drug Threats.

Created at the initiative of the United States, this coalition aims to bring together key international actors, governments, intergovernmental organizations, specialized agencies, civil society, and the private sector for concerted action to address the challenges posed by synthetic drugs at the global level.
It takes place in a context where synthetic drugs pose a growing threat to public health, security and stability in many countries around the world, and where the production and trafficking of these chemical substances has increased exponentially, with harmful consequences for society, including problems of these chemical substances drug addiction, crime and violence.
In the face of this threat, there remains an urgent need to strengthen international cooperation in order to develop global strategies to address these complex challenges. The Coalition aims to strengthen international coordination and cooperation by facilitating the exchange of information, expertise and best practices to better understand trends in the production, trafficking and consumption of synthetic drugs, and by promoting bilateral, regional and cooperative cooperation for a concerted and effective response .
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Bourita stressed that "the launch of this coalition comes at a crucial time, given the devastating consequences of drug use on health, security and social cohesion." He welcomes the establishment of this new global mechanism, calling for the collective commitment of all stakeholders.
He also emphasizes Morocco's commitment to playing an active role in this fight, in line with its global commitments.
He welcomes the establishment of this new global mechanism, noting that the coalition comes at a crucial time, given the devastating consequences of drug use on health, security and social cohesion.
The success of this global coalition requires the collective commitment of all stakeholders in this fight, added the Minister, stressing that international cooperation and multilateralism should be its guiding principles.
On this occasion, Mr. Bourita cited three key recommendations to improve the future action of this coalition, including the establishment of an effective alert system to identify new emerging emerging synthetic substances. This system should facilitate the rapid exchange of information and intelligence between member countries, to enable rapid detection and reaction.
The second recommendation recommendations addresses, treatment and awareness by prioritizing early healthcare intervention and treatment options, strengthening scientific and research partnerships to stay ahead of evolving synthetic drug trends, and implementing awareness, education and community resilience programs, both online and offline.
The Minister also called for the promotion of international collaboration through increased cooperation between countries in joint operations, and capacity building and partnerships between scientific communities, healthcare professionals and law enforcement agencies for effective responses, with a focus on the African continent.
"The growing loss of human life due to synthetic drugs is a strong reminder of the urgent need for concerted action," added the Moroccan minister, pointing out that the demand for and supply of synthetic drugs is increasing, leading to the emergence of new markets beyond the traditional ones.
Based on data from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the Minister recalls that by 2021, almost 300 million people had taken drugs, including synthetic drugs, representing a 23% increase in ten years.
The number of people suffering from drug-related disorders has almost reached 40 million, representing an increase of 45% over the last decade, underlined Mr. Bourita.
Referring to "proven collaboration between drug traffickers and various non-state actors, including terrorist and separatist groups", he said that these groups use the profits generated by their illegal activities to exculpate regional instability, further underlining the urgent need for global strategies.
In Morocco, drug use and addiction are recognized as a major public health problem, and the fight against drug trafficking is a national priority, stressed Mr. Bourita, noting that the Kingdom suffers from the smuggling of synthetic drugs in its region.
Over the last three years alone, Moroccan authorities have seized more than 5 million psychotropic tablets, mainly smuggled into Morocco from neighboring countries, he recalls.
To effectively combat the harmful effects of this problem, Morocco has implemented a comprehensive and integrated strategy to combat drug and psychotropic substance trafficking, which is periodically aligned with resolutions adopted by United Nations bodies and focused on reducing supply, preventing drug abuse and consumption, combating illegal trafficking, and strengthening international cooperation, he concluded.