Pakistan, Iran, Afghanistan to check narcotics smugglingBy Awais Saleem, IANS
Thursday, November 25, 2010
ISLAMABAD - Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan signed an agreement here Thursday on a joint plan of action to curb smuggling of narcotics in the region.
The agreement was signed under the aegis of United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
Speaking at the agreement-signing ceremony, Pakistan’s federal secretary for narcotics control Tariq Khosa said that drug smuggling is a common problem for all countries in the region and a joint strategy was very much needed to combat this challenge.
We have agreed to set up control centres at the borders, initiate joint crackdown against smugglers and share information besides other points,” he said.
Afghan Minister for Narcotics Control Zarar Ahmad Usmani said that the agreement “will help check narcotics being smuggled from Afghanistan into neighbouring countries.
UNODC executive director, Yury Fedotov, said: Terrorists in the region have established close links with smugglers involved in drugs trade and the money is being used in terrorist activities and other crimes in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Afghanistan has always been a fertile country for producing several kinds of drugs and the export of narcotics through illegal means is a big source of revenue for militant outfits in the country. The porous borders with Pakistan and Iran are used to carry out smuggling of drugs worth billions of dollars all over the world.
(Awais Saleem can be contacted at email@example.com)