Viet Nam praises Laos, Cambodia's close cooperation in drug control
(VNA) - The close cooperation of Laos and Cambodia has helped Viet Nam achieve great progress in combating drug trafficking and abuse, a Vietnamese top police officer said at the fifth trilateral meeting on drug control cooperation between Viet Nam, Laos and Cambodia in Vientiane on August 23.
Senior Lieutenant General Le The Tiem, Deputy Minister of Public Security and member of Viet Nam's National Committee on AIDS, Drug and Prostitution Control, also noted that the fight against drug trafficking along the three countries' shared border has seen positive changes. The three countries have established a system of Border Liaison Offices (BLOs) at high-risk areas along their border, together with a mechanism to exchange information and coordinate action between their relevant agencies, he said.
Tiem stressed that Southeast Asia is still one of the world's hotbeds of illegal drug production and trading, which greatly affects the countries' national defence, economy and society. He informed the meeting that the Vietnamese government always considers drug control a priority and an urgent and long-term task. Viet Nam has been implementing eight schemes in its National Action Plan on Drug Control for the period of 2001-2005.
The Deputy Minister proposed that at this meeting, the three countries review their cooperation and discuss ways to remove outstanding obstacles for better coordination in fighting drug trafficking, in pursuit of a Drug Free ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) by 2015.
The Vietnamese delegation, led by Sen. Lt. Gen. Tiem, also held bilateral meetings with the Lao delegation led by Soubank Srithirath, Minister to the President's Office and Chairman of the Lao National Commission for Drug Control and Supervision, and the Cambodian delegation led by Lt. Gen. Teng Savong, Undersecretary of State of the Ministry of Interior and Secretary General of the National Authority for Combating Drugs. During these meetings, the sides discussed measures to strengthen cooperation in drug control in the future.
Sen. Lt. Gen. Tiem and Lao Minister Soubank Srithirath signed the minutes of the sixth bilateral meeting on the control of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursor chemicals.
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