2nd Informal Meeting

Location: WebEx
11 Feb 2021, 13:00 - 14:30 (GMT+1)

Informal Meeting of the Alliance for Vienna-based Representatives of International NGOs – 2/2021  
February 11th, 2021 13:00 – 14:30 (via Webex)

Participants: Anna Alvazzi del Frate (Chair), Michael Platzer, Stefano Castagna, Martina Gredler, Michael O’Connell, Renate Amesbauer, Terutoshi Yamashita, Cecilia ODwyer, Jolanta Redo, Raphael Ngeleza, Evelyn Dürmayer, Aline Wani, Manson Bisson, Phil Reichel, Jay Albanese, Gary Hill, Karin Azadian, Linda Witong Abrahm, Liliana Schwarzenbach, Katharia Brecht, Marlene Parenzan, Ramin Iskandarli, Ingeborg Geyer (Treasurer), Ian Tennant, Mirjam Beike, Abdelkarim Darwish, Yasushi Higashizawa, Michael Davies, Sean Tait, Romina Bossa Abiven, Jacqueline Duerre, Olivia Rope, Tobias Krachler (Secretary)

UNODC SGB: Doris Resch

UNODC CST: Mirella Dummar-Frahi, Mariana Cirmaciu, Billy Batware, Anders Frantzen

Anna Alvazzi del Frate, Chair

Most of the meeting will be devoted to updates and the latest information on the forthcoming Kyoto Congress. On March 3rd there will be the traditional civil society briefing on the Congress. Welcoming remarks will be provided by the Executive Director of UNODC, Ms. Ghada Waly. This meeting, to be convened by UNODC and only for registered Congress participants, will give the opportunity to experience the Congress platform and talk about substantive issues and is only for registered participants.

Gary Hill

By the end of February 11th, all basic information on the ancillary meetings must have reached Gary. The information is needed to complete the programming of the Congress website. People have until February 18th to register through INDICO, later changes are possible but will most likely not be displayed in the Congress program. All the ancillary meetings will be recorded and accessible from www.un-congress.org within 1-2 hours after the end of the meeting. Currently, 164 ancillary meetings have been registered. The technical aspect of the meetings will be fully handled by Gary’s team, including playing pre-recorded videos of speakers. All materials displayed during ancillary meetings will automatically enter public domain, this includes books, papers, PowerPoint presentations, etc.

Mirella Dummar-Frahi, UNODC

Mirella informed that, as of the time of the meeting, 38 NGOs have registered, that meant approximately 76 civil society participants. Even taking into account last minute registrations, CST is optimistic that there will be a sufficient number of slots to accommodate all ancillary meeting speakers. Some special cases will also hopefully be sorted out soon (eg the NGOs who lost their ECOSOC or other status). John Brandolino, Director of the UNODC Division of Treaty Affairs and Secretary of the Congress, gave a briefing to staff explaining that in-person participation in Kyoto has been halved. From the CST, only Billy Batware will travel to Kyoto. Mirella and Billy explained that on the occasion of the civil society briefing of 3 March, the UNODC ED, Ms Waly, will provide welcoming remarks. There will also be a presentation of the virtual NGO lounge created for the Congress, which will provide the opportunity to network and have “corridor talks”.

Doris Resch, UNODC SGB

Doris confirmed the registration deadline of 18 February. This is the deadline for finalizing applications via INDICO and does not include the approval to be received by the UNODC, which may come later. Each NGO will be able to register 1 speaker in the plenary and 1 speaker in the committee, this is due to the limitations by the “interprefy” platform used for interpretation. All participants will be able to take part in and speak at ancillary meetings, even if they are not registered as speakers for the plenary or the committee.

Registered participants will receive a “magic link” that will take them to the virtual lobby, without password or additional registration. It is linked to each participant and whoever connects through the link will participate in the holder’s name, so it should not be shared. There will also be a mobile application in due time.

Panelists for ancillary meetings, that cannot be included in the delegation, can be registered as individual experts. Panelists will be able to register via the list provided by NGOs, maintained by the Alliance, once their names are checked in corresponding ancillary meetings. All participants need to register through INDICO in order to receive the link to the platform.

The plenary and the committee meetings will be webcasted on the UNODC Crime Congress website but only in English. Guides on ancillary meetings, the virtual lobby, etc. will be provided in due time.

Anders Frantzen, UNODC CST

Anders informed that the Alliance, as one of three umbrella networks in Vienna, has been invited to attend a briefing on the new strategy of UNODC on 25 February at 11:30 CET. The meeting will be attended by the chairs of the umbrella networks, along with interested members, and recorded for the purpose of sharing with our respective memberships.

Tour de table

Many participants shared information on their ongoing work. Topics included updates on the Congress; various events and summits planned in the upcoming weeks; as well as updates on new publications and research initiatives, which will also be published on the Alliance website.


To avoid overloading the Congress week, the next Informal Meeting will be exceptionally held on Monday March 15th from 17:00 to 18:30 Vienna time.