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Gov’t signs UN conventions on transnational crimes

By Gladys Fred Kole

South Sudan has signed three international UN treaties that aim at curbing transnational crimes, terrorism financing, and drug trafficking.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Dr. Amb. James Pitia Morgan signed the three conventions on behalf of the government during a ceremony held at the United Nations headquarters in New York, last Friday.

“The three conventions that have been signed are the Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, the International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Financing, and the United Nations Convention against Transnational Crimes,” the foreign ministry statement on its page partly read.

“South Sudan’s signing of the three conventions demonstrates its commitment to international cooperation as well as its efforts to combat illegal activities and promote peace and security,” it added.

The United Nations Undersecretary for Legal Affairs and the Head of the Treaty Section were present at the signing ceremony, reflecting the gravity and official nature of the occasion.

The Secretary-General of the United Nations, acting in his capacity as depositary, communicated in a statement that the signing was effected on October 20, 2023.

According to the UN, the Convention shall enter into force for South Sudan on November 19, 2023, in accordance with Article 38(2) of the Convention, which reads as follows:

“For each state or regional economic integration organization ratifying, accepting, approving, or acceding to this Convention after the deposit of the forty-first instrument of such action,

This Convention shall enter into force on the thirtieth day after the date of deposit by such state or organization of the relevant instrument.” The secretary-general’s statement was noted.

The Convention represents a major step forward in the fight against transnational organized crime and signifies the recognition by Member States of the seriousness of the problems posed by it, as well as the need to foster and enhance close international cooperation in order to tackle those problems.

States that ratify this instrument commit themselves to taking a series of measures against transnational organized crime.

This includes the creation of domestic criminal offenses, participation in an organized criminal group, money laundering, corruption, and obstruction of justice; the adoption of new and sweeping frameworks for extradition; mutual legal assistance; and law enforcement cooperation.

It further calls for the promotion of training and technical assistance for building or upgrading the necessary capacity of national authorities.

The Minister was accompanied by Amb. Dr. Riek Puok, Director General for Multilateral Relations. Also, the signing ceremony was attended by members of South Sudan’s Permanent Mission in New York.

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