13th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice

13th United Nations Congress
on Crime Prevention and
Criminal Justice

Doha, 12-19 April 2015


A general view of the opening of the United Nations Crime Congress. Date: 01 September 1975. Geneva, Switzerland © UN Photo

Every five years policy-makers and practitioners working in crime prevention and criminal justice gather for the United Nations Crime Congress to help shape the agenda and standards of the UN on crime prevention and criminal justice. The Doha Congress in 2015, which marks the 60th anniversary of the Crime Congress, will consider how best to integrate crime prevention and criminal justice into the wider UN agenda.

The United Nations Crime Congress is the world's largest and most diverse gathering of governments, civil society, academia and experts in crime prevention and criminal justice. For 60 years the congresses have had an impact on criminal justice policies and strengthened international cooperation against the global threat of transnational organized crime.

The practice of holding international conferences on crime control matters at five-year intervals dates back to 1872 when conferences were held under the auspices of the International Prison Commission which later became the International Penal and Penitentiary Commission (IPPC).

The First United Nations Congress was held in Geneva in 1955.

Sixty years later, this tradition continues with the Government of Qatar hosting the Thirteenth United Nations Congress in Doha. The theme of the Thirteenth Congress is "Integrating crime prevention and criminal justice into the wider UN agenda to address social and economic challenges and to promote the rule of law at the national and international levels, and public participation".

On the agenda in 2015

Watch the video: 60 Years UN Crime Congress

60 years of United Nations Crime Congresses

Download the booklet "United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice 1955-2015: 60 years of achievements" pdf

1955: Geneva, Switzerland
The First Congress adopted the Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners.

1960: London, United Kingdom
The Second Congress recommended special police services for juvenile Justice.

1965: Stockholm, Sweden
The Third Congress analyzed the relationship between criminality and social change.

1970: Kyoto, Japan
The Fourth Congress called for improving crime prevention planning for economic and social development.

1975: Geneva, Switzerland
The Fifth Congress approved the Declaration on the Protection of All Persons from Being Subjected to Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

1980: Caracas, Venezuela
Under the theme “Crime prevention and the quality of life”, the Sixth Congress recognized that crime prevention must be based on the social, cultural, political and economic circumstances of countries.

1985: Milan, Italy
The Seventh Congress adopted the Milan Plan of Action and several new United Nations standards and norms under the theme “Crime prevention for freedom, justice, peace and development".

1990: Havana, Cuba
The Eighth Congress recommended action against organized crime and terrorism under the theme “International crime prevention and criminal justice in the Twenty-first century”.

1995: Cairo, Egypt
The Ninth Congress focused on international cooperation and practical technical assistance for strengthening the rule of law under the theme “Seeking security and justice for all”.

2000: Vienna, Austria
The Tenth Congress adopted the Vienna Declaration committing Member States to strengthen international cooperation in the fight against transnational crime and criminal justice reform.

2005: Bangkok, Thailand
The Eleventh Congress adopted the Bangkok Declaration, a crucial political document laying the foundation for and showing the direction towards strengthening international coordination and cooperation efforts to prevent and combat crime.

2010: Salvador, Brazil
The Twelfth Congress highlighted the pivotal role of justice in development, emphasized the need for a holistic approach to criminal justice system reform to strengthen the capacity of criminal justice systems, and explored ways of preventing and controlling emerging forms of crime worldwide.

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