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This book describes the events, activities and negotiations leading up to the 2016 UN General Assembly Special Session on international drug policy. A range of respected authors from International institutions, academia and civil society organisations detail the background to the negotiations and the outcome; and possible future scenarios for continued reform and change at the High Level Review in 2019. The chapters include consideration of the positions taken by blocs and nation-states at all points on the prohibition - reform continuum. Topics covered include discussions on the importance of human rights, access to essential medicines and the role played by cannabis in revealing the contradictions and divisions in both national and international contexts. The break-down of the previous international consensus on 'the world drug problem' is clearly described and analysed, as is the slow progress being made to the adoption of a human rights and health-based approach to currently illegal drugs. Consideration is also given to the nations and arguments which continue to defend prohibition and its repressive impacts on national populations, and the prioritising of geo-politics over population health this represents in practice. There are lessons and examples here for international politics and national policy reform.
About the Author
Axel Klein is a researcher and project consultant with a long standing commitment to drug policy reform. Axel has headed the research and international units at DrugScope and been a trustee for Transform, two UK NGOs. is publications include The Khat Controversy: Stimulating the Debate on Drugs (2007), Caribbean Drugs: From Criminalization to Harm Reduction (2004), and Drugs and the World (2009). More recently Axel has published on cannabis cultivation and the anthropology of drugs. He has been the editor of journal Drugs and Alcohol Today since 2007. Blaine Stothard is an educationalist and prevention specialist who came to drug policy through an advisory role in a London LEA at the time of the UK's first national drug policy. He was active in the Healthy Schools programmes from 1998 to 2010 as an independent consultant, has worked on related policy development and implementation in the UK and Eastern Europe and was the external consultant for the Moscow-based schools drug education programme run by Project HOPE from 1998 to 2006. He has been the co-editor of Drugs and Alcohol Today since 2014.