Drug activity widespread on World Wide Web UN expert panel reports

There are chat rooms that discuss recipes for making drugs and the World Wide Web has also become a vehicle for money laundering, the Vienna-based International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) says in its annual report, which this year deals with the theme of globalization and new technologies. The INCB comprises 13 experts serving in their individual capacity and is responsible for promoting government compliance with the provisions of the drug control treaties. The panel also is mandated to ensure that adequate supplies of legal drugs are available for medical and scientific uses, and to identify weaknesses in the national and international control systems for illicit drugs. Speaking at a UN press briefing in New York to launch the report, Board member Herbert Okun said the panel was not about to call for censorship but thought that the universality of the Web and of the drug control treaties demanded some kind of international and national responses to the problem. The Board, in its recommendations, called on governments, the information technology industry, advocacy groups and health professionals to help regulate the Web in a sensible way. As for addressing the serious drug control situation in Afghanistan – which was closely linked to achieving peace, security and development – Mr. Okun said that nation needed the full support and cooperation of the international community, particularly the neighbouring countries. Global action was needed to help Afghan farmers cultivate alternative cash crops to replace the resumption of opium cultivation. Since the change in administration in Kabul, Mr. Okun said the Board has been in steady contact with UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and with the Security Council. Last December, and again two weeks ago, Mr. Okun and the President of the INCB Board, Hamid Ghodse, met with the President of the Council to raise consciousness on the drug cultivation problem in Afghanistan. Besides a region-by-region analysis of the global drug situation, the Board’s report also deals with how the issue of cannabis control is dividing the world. read more

Pirates lost in the pub scupper Penzance world record attempt

first_imgPirates get ready to be counted at the Penzance Pirates on the Prom attemptCredit:Cornwall Live / SWNS.com Lyn King and Stephanie Phelps get ready to be counted Pirates get ready to be counted at the Penzance Pirates on the Prom attempt Lyn King and Stephanie Phelps get ready to be countedCredit:Cornwall Live / SWNS.com He said the funding for the event was sourced privately this year with Penzance Town Council giving what he described as a “modest” donation – believed to be around £1,500.He added: “We have learnt lessons from the previous attempt. The money was not properly authorised last time and then covered up, but this time everything has been fully transparent and we have made just a modest contribution towards the record attempt this year.” Penzance first won the Guinness World Record for the largest pirate gathering in 2011, stealing the title from Hastings.But in 2013, their south east rivals won back the title and Penzance decided to challenge them again a year later.That attempt was marred in controversy after costs showed Penzance Town Council had spent £55,000 on the failed bid.Costs included spending nearly £300 on inflatable parrots, nearly £2,000 on pirate t-shirts and £600 on pirate flags. No figures have yet been released on what the latest attempt cost.center_img Speaking on Monday, Mayor of Penzance Dick Cliffe said: “It is a disappointment not to break the record and miss out by such a small amount… The pirates of Penzance is an expression everyone knows – not the pirates of Hastings. They are just impostors.”He added: “I remember looking into the pub and seeing people in pirate outfits around the time the count was being done. I thought – what are they doing there?”Whether it is missed communication over the importance of being in the compounds for just ten minutes I don’t know.”But it is a tough thing to marshal that number of pirates – they are not a group that traditionally are easily marshalled by anybody.” “We won’t say how many [were in the pub]. We won’t shame those who were down in the Dolphin and that but we still haven’t taught the people who go to the pub to get here on time.”To succeed they needed to have more than 14,231 pirates in one place by 4pm on Sunday. To qualify pirates had to have two accessories, such as a sword or eye patch.  An attempt by Penzance to beat the world record for 14,000 pirates in one place failed after a group accidentally stayed in the pub and missed the count. The Cornish town has been trying to claim the Guinness World Record for several years, having lost it to Hastings in 2013. But they will be forced to try again next year after missing out on the title by “just a few” on Sunday.Organisers blamed the miss in part to groups of pirates who did not leave their local pub in time to be counted. Pubs in the area had promised to make sure pirates were out and in the count area by 3.45pm. But Andy Hazlehurst told the crowd: “Sorry to say we’re back again next year, we fell short by a few. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more