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Academic Chosen To Head UN Anti-Narcotics Panel

Experienced academic chosen to head UN anti-narcotics panel

20 May 2008 - A renowned Iranian physician and professor who is resident in the United Kingdom has been elected the next President of the independent body which monitors the implementation of United Nations drug control conventions.

Hamid Ghodse becomes the new head of the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB), the Vienna-based panel announced today, and will serve in the post for one year. A professor at the University of London, he is author of more than 300 scientific papers on drug-related issues.

Professor Ghodse, who was chosen during the board's current annual session, has been a member of the INCB since 1992 and during that period has served eight times as its President, with the most recent stint occurring in 2005.

This year's INCB session is expected to review the global supply and demand of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances for medical purposes and discuss the growing problem of chemicals used in the illicit manufacture of drugs. They will also consider drug control situations in Ethiopia, Ukraine and the United Arab Emirates.

INCB members serve in an individual capacity and monitor compliance with the provisions of the international drug control treaties. The panel ensures that adequate supplies of legal drugs are available for medical and scientific purposes, and makes certain that no leakage from licit sources of drugs to illicit trafficking occurs. It also identifies and helps to correct weaknesses in drug control systems and determines which chemicals used to manufacture drugs should be under international control.

ENDS

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