Lawmakers from 44 countries to attend international anti-drug conference in Russia

MOSCOW, November 29 – Lawmakers from 44 countries will attend the international conference dubbed “Parliamentary Members vs. Drugs” that will be held in the State Duma on December 4, State Duma Vice Speaker and head of the United Russia faction Sergey Neverov said at a briefing in the run-up to the forum.

“On December 4, the State Duma will host an important international event supported by the UN and initiated by our President [Vladimir Putin]: the conference ‘Parliamentary Members vs. Drugs,’” the politician said. “MPs from 44 countries, representatives of foreign structures and of our and the foreign non-profit sector will convene here, in the State Duma, to discuss this problem and the ways to combat it, as well as study international practices to fight this evil together,” he added.

According to Neverov, a plenary conference meeting will be held in the course of the morning, at which State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin, the heads of the member states’ parliaments and the chairmen of relevant committees will speak. “Russian Foreign Minister [Sergey Lavrov,] Interior Minister [Vladimir Kolokoltsev,] and Health Minister [Veronika Skvortsova] will [attend the conference,]” he specified.

Three sections will be held in the afternoon. The first one will be devoted to the improvement of anti-drug laws and the second, to drug addiction and modern approaches to rehabilitation, while the third section will focus on the role of non-profit organizations in the war on drugs.

The Moscow Declaration of Interparliamentary Anti-Drug Cooperation is expected to be signed at the international conference, Chairman of the State Duma Committee for Foreign Affairs Leonid Slutsky said at Wednesdays’ press conference.

“The aim of the first international conference is to establish a parliamentary dimension for international anti-drug cooperation. The so-called Moscow declaration will be adopted, that will, in fact, underlie the parliamentary dimension and the parliamentary component of international cooperation in the war on drug spread for years to come,” the MP said.

He explained that the issue chiefly concerns the unification of national anti-drug laws. “We will discuss strategic approaches of the national parliaments to the war on one of the main threats of the 21st century comparable to international terrorism: drugs, drug addiction and drug trafficking,” the committee head said. – TASS