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UN Urges Push Against Organized Crime

Annan Urges Full Participation In UN Treaty Against Organized Crime

Countries gathered today in Vienna for a conference on promoting the first United Nations treaty against cross-border organized crime, with Secretary-General Kofi Annan urging them to strive for universal participation in the accord.

The treaty’s full implementation “can make a real difference to millions of peoples’ lives, and will be an important contribution to saving succeeding generations not only from organized crime itself, but also from the scourge of war and the misery of poverty,” Mr. Annan said in a message to the first session of the Conference of Parties to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.

The message was delivered by Antonio Maria Costa, Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

The Convention, which entered into force on 29 September 2003, has 147 States Signatories and 79 States Parties. By ratifying the treaty, countries commit to adopting a series of crime-control measures, including the criminalization of participation in an organized criminal group, money laundering, corruption and obstruction of justice.

They also pledge help in extradition, mutual legal assistance, administrative and regulatory controls, law-enforcement, victim protection and crime-prevention measures.

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