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UNGA Committee Approves Draft Resolution on Illegal Trade in Endangered Species

26 November 2012: The UN General Assembly (UNGA) Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) has approved the draft resolution on “Strengthening the UN crime prevention and criminal justice programme, in particular its technical cooperation capacity” (A/C.3/67/L.15/Rev.1). 

This resolution follows the adoption of a previous resolution by the UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice on “Crime prevention and criminal justice responses against illicit trafficking in endangered species of wild fauna and flora,” which notes concern about the involvement of organized criminal groups in the trafficking of endangered species.

John Scanlon, Secretary-General, Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), emphasized that the UN resolutions reflect recognition by the international community of wildlife crime as a serious organized crime, requiring a coordinated response "equal to other transnational crimes such as the trafficking of narcotics or arms.”

The latest draft resolution highlights concern at the negative effects of transnational organized crime and the challenges and threats posed by illicit trade, which includes the illegal trade in endangered and protected species of wild fauna and flora. It calls for strengthening international cooperation, capacity building, criminal justice responses and law enforcement efforts. The text also draws attention to emerging policy issues identified in the report of the UN Secretary-General on the implementation of the mandates of the UN crime prevention and criminal justice programme, with particular reference to the technical cooperation activities of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), including illicit trafficking in endangered species of wild fauna and flora, according to CITES. [CITES Press Release] [Draft Resolutions in Third Committee] [UNGA Draft Resolution A/C.3/67/L.15/Rev.1]