BANGKOK (19 February 2018) – UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, Andrew Gilmour will convene a meeting of international experts in Bangkok to discuss the human rights dimensions of the criminal justice response to the drug problem in South East Asia, including the application of the death penalty.
This array of academics, legal professionals and human rights experts from the region will be joined by UN human rights officials and representatives from the UN Office of Drugs and Crime at the UN Conference Center. The meeting will examine drug trafficking trends, national responses, public perceptions and human rights challenges in the war against drug trafficking and drug-related offences.
“There are currently 32 States or territories in the world where illegal importing, exporting, sale, or possession of drugs can constitute a capital offence, resulting in the death penalty,” Gilmour said announcing the one-day Bangkok event. “Approximately half of them are in South East Asia.”
“What explains why the region has such harsh sentencing policies for drug offences but a continued increase in drug-related offences? How are public policy responses shaped by public opinion, media or the facts? What’s the experience of states in the region that do not have the death penalty? These are issues of particular interest for the upcoming regional experts’ seminar,” the UN Assistant Secretary-General stressed.
The expert discussion will take place on Wednesday 28 February 2018, from 9:00 am to 5 pm, at the UN headquarters in Bangkok. OHCHR is grateful for the financial support of the Federal Republic of Germany.
Andrew Gilmour (United Kingdom) assumed his functions as UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights on 1 October 2016, heading OHCHR’s Office in New York. In October 2016, Mr. Gilmour was designated by the UN Secretary-General as senior official to lead the efforts within the UN system to address intimidation and reprisals against those cooperating with the UN on human rights.