Counter Narcotics Police goes online with the Precursor Incident Communication System in Afghanistan
The Precursor Chemical Unit (PCU) of the Counter Narcotics Police of Afghanistan (CNPA) has recently commenced using the on-line Precursor Incident Communication System (PICS) developed by the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB). Leutenant Ahmad Zubair-Zia (pictured) of the PCU has investigated and submitted reports on various precursors cases in Afghanistan, including a recent 11 tonne seizure of acetic anhydride in the western province of Herat. Acetic anhydride is a key chemical used in the conversion of opium into heroin and is banned under the Afghanistan's law in force. The value of this seizure is estimated at over USD 4 million.
The PICS system is a secure online tool to enhance real time communication and information sharing between national authorities on precursor incidents which may include seizures, stopped shipments, diversions and illicit laboratories. Information exchange is essential if governments are to launch joint operations to identify the methods and routes of diversion as well as to prosecute those responsible. Such investigations have been initiated with the neighbouring countries into the above seizure.
UNODC's Country Office for Afghanistan provides mentoring and support to CNPA's PCU under the project AFG/I85 'Regional cooperation in Precursor Control between Afghanistan and Neighbouring Countries' which is funded by the European Union.