Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan discussed ways for effectively combatting the trafficking of Afghan opiates...

...under UNODC-facilitatied Triangular Initiative Senior Officials Meeting in Islamabad.

Islamabad, 13 December 2018. A 2-day interaction between the counter-narcotics authorities of the Islamic Republics of Afghanistan, Iran, and Pakistan concluded at the Islamabad Marriott Hotel yesterday. The tripartite event, entitled ' 13 th Triangular Initiative Senior Officials Meeting' was hosted by the Ministry of Narcotics Control, Government of Pakistan. It brought together counter-narcotics partners from the three neighboring countries to discuss ways and means for strengthening cooperation against the trafficking of Afghan opiates.

In his opening remarks, Mr. Cesar Guedes, UNODC Representative in Pakistan noted, 'We believe that strengthening of regional partnership against the massive flow of illicit drugs in the region, within the framework of this strategic collaborative process, can serve as a conduit for saving lives and improving their quality'.

Chair of the meeting Mr. Arif Nawaz Khan Secretary Ministry of Narcotics Control, Government of Pakistan expressed his satisfaction over the progress made under the Triangular Initiative through this senior officials meeting. 'It was really heartening for the Government of Pakistan to welcome our regional partners on counter-narcotics. This close interaction has helped in finding workable solutions to our common challenges', he remarked during the closing ceremony.

Major General Muhammad Arif Malik, Director General Anti Narcotics Force (ANF) headed the Pakistan delegation in the 2-day event, while the delegations of Afghanistan and Iran were led by their respective Director Generals. The Representative UNODC Country Office Iran, and Head UNODC Regional Programme Afghanistan and Neighboring Countries were amongst the prominent UNODC delegates.

Various regional cooperation mechanisms agreed under the Triangular Initiative include enhancement of the regional response through information-sharing; planning and conducting drug-interdiction operations; and establishment of Border Liaison Offices (BLOs). Through this 2-day meeting, the three sides have agreed, inter-alia, to strengthen BLOs; plan and conduct more simultaneous patrolling operations; and intelligence-led interdiction operations. The senior officials expressed interest to utilize each other's counter-narcotics training academies, to ensure better understanding and coordination.Since its inception in 2007, the UNODC-facilitated Triangular Initiative forum has served as a cornerstone of the regional approach to drug control. It is supported by the Paris Pact Initiative and the Regional Programme for Afghanistan and Neighboring Countries, which encompasses a range of programmes designed to reduce the poppy cultivation, trafficking and consumption of drugs. UNODC offices in the three countries provide technical support to the respective host governments for implementing their commitments under this counter-narcotics forum.

The three countries have been combatting this scourge of illicit drug trafficking over a long period and at great cost. Many law enforcement officials, as well as ordinary citizens, have sacrificed their lives in the struggle against drug trafficking. The Triangular Initiative has helped the three countries in finding solutions to common challenges, by adhering to a comprehensive and balanced approach.


Media Coverage:

  1. Radio Pakistan
  2. Pakistan Observer
  3. Urdu Point
  4. DAWN
  5. The Nation
  7. Khyber News
  8. IRNA
  9. Custom Today
  10. Iran Press
  12. Hamari Web
  13. TNS World
  14. PAJHWOK Afghan News
  15. Presstv