Following is the text of UN Secretary‑General António Guterres’ video message to the tenth session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, held today:

I am pleased to greet the tenth session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.  This year marks the twentieth anniversary of this landmark measure to protect the rule of law, bring criminals to justice, support victims and promote human rights.

Today the Convention has 190 parties and enjoys near‑global adherence.  We now also have an important new mechanism for reviewing its implementation.  This is a crucial support tool for States to identify technical assistance needs, enhance international cooperation to tackle transnational organized crime and contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

And it is especially vital now.  Criminals are seeking to profit from the COVID‑19 crisis.  The pandemic has also heightened the vulnerability of migrants to risks of human trafficking and migrant smuggling.

International cooperation through the Convention against Transnational Organized Crime is more urgent than ever.  We need to come together to prevent exploitation and protect the vulnerable.  I urge you to make the most of this Conference to strengthen multilateral solutions for justice.  Thank you.

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