The International Harm Reduction Association (IHRA) anounced that their next conference will be held in Bangkok, Thailand. According to IHRA, this is a tremendous advocacy opportunity to change the attitudes of the Thai government and society towards people who use drugs. Nevertheless, many people from the harm reduction movement do not share the optimism of IHRA. Some are deeply concerned about the practicality of this decision.
They feel as if it is unsafe to invite drug users to a country that recently declared a War on Drugs. Protesters also remind us of the terrible extrajudicial killings of 2004, which happened after IHRA’s conference was held there, without a significant advocacy impact.
In contrast, supporters of the Bangkok conference argue there is no evidence that the Thai government is planning to kill drug users -even if government officials made controversial statements about the necessity of killing drug users. It seems the issue divides not only the international harm reduction community, but also the drug user movement.
HCLU is filming the conference in Barcelona and interviewed participants about their opinion.
Posted by Péter Sarosi
If you would like to comment on this movie, please visit our mirror page at our Drug Policy website Drugreporter.