ASHGABAT, 13 July 2012 – An OSCE-supported roundtable discussion on mechanisms for effective co-operation between police and drug enforcement agencies in the area of illegal drug apprehension procedures concluded in Ashgabat today.
The OSCE Centre, in partnership with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Regional Office in Kazakhstan and the OSCE Secretariat’s Transnational Threats Department, organized the two-day event to support the country’s efforts to improve illegal drugs trafficking prevention and apprehension mechanisms and enhance national interagency co-operation capacities.
The event gathered 17 representatives of Turkmenistan’s State Service for Combating Drugs, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Supreme Court and the General Prosecutor’s Office.
“Regionally, illegal drug trafficking remains among the most dangerous threats to economic security and political stability. The regular exchange of information and experiences and co-ordination of anti-drug activities among all relevant bodies are crucial,” said Ambassador Ivo Petrov, Head of the OSCE Centre in Ashgabat in his opening speech. “The roundtable discussion will contribute to the strengthening of interagency co-operation in the area of preventing, detecting and apprehending illegal drug movement across borders.”
The international speakers included senior experts from the UNODC, the US Department of Justice, the Federal Drug Control Agency of the Russian Federation, the Central Asian Regional Information and Coordination Centre (CARICC) and the OSCE Secretariat.
The roundtable discussion addressed the current situation with countering trafficking in drugs and precursors in Central Asia, the roles of drug control and police bodies and the models of effective intergovernmental co-operation in combating illicit drugs.
“One of the most important factors for success in the fight against illicit trafficking of drugs is the co-operation between law enforcement agencies and departments. It is my firm belief that this roundtable event will serve as a basis for further development of the co-operation among these structures in Turkmenistan,” said OSCE Senior Police Adviser Knut Dreyer in his keynote address.
The participants also discussed practical examples of effective police work in apprehending illicit drugs and investigation techniques as well as challenges related to the prosecution of illegal drugs cases.