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13th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
On April 12-19, 2015, the 13th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice was held in Doha, hosted by the Government of Qatar. Attended by State representatives, representatives of United Nations bodies and entities, UN affiliated institutes, specialized institutes, inter-governmental organizations, non- governmental organizations, and individual expert observers, the Congress drew over 4,000 participants from 149 countries. It was the first Congress to have the UN Secretary General, the President of the General Assembly and the President of the Economic and Social Council in attendance
Discussions took place at the 13th Congress on a wide range of issues, surrounding the themes of:
- the successes and challenges in implementing comprehensive crime prevention and criminal justice policies and strategies to promote the rule of law at the national and international levels, and to support sustainable development;
- international cooperation, including at the regional level, to combat transnational organized crime;
- comprehensive and balanced approaches to prevent and adequately respond to new and emerging forms of transnational crime; and
- national approaches to public participation in strengthening crime prevention and criminal justice
ICCLR associates and experts made significant contributions to the four high level workshops. Yvon Dandurand, ICCLR fellow and senior associate served as the Scientific Moderator for Workshop 1, and also presented on recent initiatives to assist countries in implementing the United Nations Model Strategies and Practical Measures on the Elimination of Violence against Children in the Field Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (General Assembly Resolution 69/194). In particular, he highlighted the UNODC checklist to facilitate assessments and measures to bring justice systems into compliance with the Model Strategies.
Dr. Richard Frank, Associate Director of the International Cybercrime Research Centre and Assistant Professor, Simon Fraser University School of Criminology participated in Workshop 3 and made the presentation entitled “Measuring Cybercrime: The Example of Online Child Exploitation”.
Mathew Torigian, Deputy Minister Community Safety, Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Service Province of Ontario, invited by ICCLR to participate in Workshop 4, provided an overview of the evolution of community mobilization within the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services in Ontario.
More information, including videos of the Workshops can be found below:
- Workshop 1: “The role of the United Nations standards and norms in crime prevention and criminal justice in support of effective, fair, humane and accountable criminal justice systems: experiences and lessons learned in meeting the unique needs of women and children, in particular the treatment and social reintegration of offenders”
- Workshop 2: "Trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants: successes and challenges in criminalization, in mutual legal assistance and in effective protection of witnesses and trafficking victims”
- Workshop 3: “Strengthening crime prevention and criminal justice responses to evolving forms of crime, such as cybercrime and trafficking in cultural property, including lessons learned and international cooperation”
- Workshop 4: “Public contribution to crime prevention and raising awareness of criminal justice: experiences and lessons learned”
The 13th Congress also featured over 200 ancillary meetings, organized by various organizations and experts. In collaboration with the Thailand Institute of Justice, ICCLR organized and held an ancillary meeting on Justice Indicators and Criminal Justice Reform.
The most significant outcome of the thirteenth Congress was the adoption of the Doha Declaration on integrating crime prevention and criminal justice into the wider United Nations agenda to address social and economic challenges and to promote the rule of law at the national and international levels, and public participation. The Doha Declaration stresses the commitment and political will of Member States to implement comprehensive crime prevention and criminal justice strategies. These policies will work to promote the rule of law nationally and internationally.
In closing, UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov noted that the 13th Congress had set a very high bar for the future, and that the key task now was to turn the Declaration into action. He remarked, "this Congress has provided a solid platform for the international community to recognize the tangible links between the rule of law and sustainable development. We must build on those links as we set our sustainable development agenda for the next 15 years."
The 14th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Congress will be held in Japan in 2020.