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October 2021

Drugs in a global perspective: The international control system's best foot forward

Author(s): Rosenqvist, P.

Journal/Book: Addict Res. 1999; 7: C/O Stbs Ltd, PO Box 90, Reading, Berks, England Rg1 8Jl. Harwood Acad Publ Gmbh. 177-192.

Abstract: With the World Drug Report, the United Nations Drug Control Programme offers a textbook on global trends and developments in drug use and in the illicit market, theories and interpretations of drug use, health and social harms from use, counterstrategies and programs, the drug control structure, and ''regulation-legalization'' debates. Country profiles for 8 countries summarize available data, making use also of two problematic comparative indices. Harms from alcohol and tobacco figure heavily in the arguments for maintaining drug prohibition, but these drugs are otherwise excluded from consideration. The report highlights deficiencies in available data, particularly on adverse consequences of drug use, though they are the premise for the drug control system. The report's picture of trends in drugs use and in the illicit market is realistically gloomy, and its presentation of the effectiveness of counterstrategies is usually appropriately cautious. The report is often internally inconsistent in its premises and arguments, but is true to its aim to ''de-sensationalize the drugs issue''. De-sensationalizing drugs may, however, undercut the justification for a drug control system of such extraordinary ambitions and scope.

Note: Article Room R, Natl Inst Alcohol & Drug Res, Dannevigsveien 10, N-0463 Oslo, NORWAY


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