Ambassador H.E. Khojesta Fana Ebrahimkhel delivered a statement at the tenth session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC) held from the 12th to the 16th of October.
The tenth session of the Conference of the Parties to the UNOTC was opened by H.E. Ghada Waly, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), who called for the COVID-19 crisis to be viewed as an accelerating factor of criminal activity, and for governments to use a multilateral approach in combating organized crime. The opening session was also addressed by Alessandro Cortese, Permanent Representative of Italy, and outgoing President of the 9th session, Mohamed El-Molla, Permanent Representative of Egypt, and other high-level speakers.
Ambassador Ebrahimkhel stated that the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan upholds international cooperation and multilateralism as a way of finding global solutions to various forms of organized crime and enhance cooperation with international partners, such as the UNODC, to deal with issues like terrorism, corruption, trafficking of persons, smuggling of migrants and trafficking of cultural property.
On the topic of terrorism, the Ambassador stated that terrorism, in its various forms and manifestations, continues to threaten the security and stability of our societies. Because Afghanistan has been the prime victim of terrorism for many years now, intensified efforts are required to strengthen border cooperation, information sharing, and judicial cooperation, including in the areas of extradition, and legal assistance at the sub-regional, regional, and international levels. Due to the transnational nature of terrorism, international cooperation remains key in addressing various aspects of terrorism, and in this context, we believe that countering terrorism needs to remain an area of focus within the United Nations, including under the Conference of Parties to the UNTOC, the Crime Congress and the CPPCJ.
In her closing statement, the Ambassador reiterated that the UNTOC remains an important international instrument in addressing various forms of transnational organized crime, but a shortage of capacity in the implementation of the convection remains a major challenge for most states. The Ambassador stated that a well-established review mechanism would be able to assist State parties in identifying capacity-building needs in the implementation of the convection.