We Don't Want a Russian UN Drug Czar!

Watch our video and take urgent action - tell Ban Ki Moon that a Russian diplomat is a bad choice for UNODC director!

At the end of July the current head of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Antonio Maria Costa will leave his post after eight years. Unfortunately, Ban Ki Moon, the Secretary General of the UN decided to appoint the current Russian ambassador to the UK, Yuri Fedotov the new Executive Director.

Russia is a country with one of the worst records on drug policy and human rights: it ignores scientific evidence on effective HIV prevention among drug users and its punitive drug laws push drug users to the margins of society. Watch our video to find out more!


1. Please help us to spread the word and share this video with others!

2. Click here and send an email to the Secretary General of the UN, Ban Ki Moon and urge him to reconsider his decision!

If the email doesn't open automatically, please copypaste the sample letter to your own software and send it to sg@un.org

Mr Ban Ki Moon
United Nations Secretary-General
United Nations Secretariat New York, NY 10017

Dear Mr. Secretary General!

I am writing to you because you are currently considering the appointment of the Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). I was dismayed to learn that the you decided to appoint Yuri Fedotov, a Russian diplomat for this position.

I strongly oppose a candidate from a country with one of the worst records on drug policy and human rights. Russia is experiencing the most rapid increase in HIV infections on earth: there are more than 1 million people living with HIV, 2 in 3 new infections are related to the sharing of injecting equipment by drug users. This  perpetuation of the epidemic is directly attributed to the Russian goverments disavowal of simple scientific evidence : it bans opiate substitution treatment and it does not provide funding  for life-saving needle and syringe programs.

This situation is exacerbated by the condition of Russian prisons - the hotbeds of the HIV and Tuberculosis epidemics. For drug users, the Gulag is alive and well in these places: prisoners with HIV and TB are often tortured and left to die without life saving treatment!

It is not surprising that Russia consistently seeks to block the inclusion of human rights language from international policies. At the UN commission on narcotic drugs in 2010 Russia stated that the fight against AIDS is ‘not linked to human rights’.

I ask you to reconsider your decision and appoint someone to this position who is independent from governments, who can lead UNODC in the fight against HIV and AIDS, as well as someone who respects scientific evidence and human rights.

Best regards,

(your name)

Posted by Peter Sarosi



Related articles

HCLU is Defending the Activists Who Peacefully Disobeyed

Lawyers from HCLU are defending a number of young activists who have recently been charged for occupying the headquarters of the governing party, FIDESZ and for blocking traffic around the Hungarian Parliament. The response by the police to the demonstrations was meant to instill fear and to scare people away from similar acts in the future.

The Human Rights Costs of the War on Drugs

Watch and share our movie to raise awareness on the human rights consequences of the global war on drugs! Read more >>

'I would like to send Viktor Orbán a message'

Wife and husband cannot find employment. It is very difficult to send three children to school on only a family allowance and welfare. They are moving, because they feel they have no opportunities in Borsod (county in Hungary.)