Drug abuse and illicit trafficking have calamitous consequences for the world's efforts to deliver greater prosperity and equality for all. There are up to 200,000 preventable deaths each year from overdoses. Illicit drugs spawn criminal violence and weaken a state's essential institutions.
Countries emerging from conflict or escaping economic decline can be overwhelmed when illicit drugs pour across their borders. The United Nations, working across peacekeeping, law enforcement, health, human rights and other related areas, is strongly committed to helping them repel illicit drugs and prevent spill-over from becoming takeover.
On the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, I urge the international community to strengthen its efforts to confront illicit drugs as an integral element in building a safe and sustainable future.