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Cambodia and the Lao People's Democratic Republic increase cross-border cooperation

Preah Vihear (Cambodia)/Ban Meuang Sene (Lao People's Democratic Republic),10 August 2010
- From 19 to 23 July 2010, a cross-border cooperation meeting was held for new members of the border liaison offices in Preah Vihear and Ban Meuang Sene.

The meeting was organized by the Cambodian National Authority for Combating Drugs and the Lao National Commission for Drug Control and Supervision, and administered under the UNODC project on "Partnerships Against Transnational Crime Through Regional Organized Law Enforcement" (PATROL).

The primary objective of the cross-border cooperation meeting was to bring law enforcement officers from both countries together and build a network for information sharing. Officers from both sides pointed out that a key challenge involved trafficking in methamphetamine and marijuana.

Following the meeting, visits to both border liaison offices were organized. These visits highlighted once more the need for adequate resources and equipment.

New equipment such as computers, digital cameras, mobile phones, motorcycles and office furniture provided with the support of UNODC will help overcome some of the difficulties and enhance the effectiveness of the border liaison offices.

In addition to providing resources and equipment, UNODC implements a computer-based training programme to build the capacity of border officers. The programme uses interactive e-learning tools developed specifically for law enforcement officers to meet the challenges posed by transnational organized crime.

Under the "Partnerships Against Transnational Crime Through Regional Organized Law Enforcement" (PATROL) programme, UNODC strives to strengthen law enforcement in the border areas of six countries in South-East Asia, namely Cambodia, China, the Lao People's Democratic Republic, Myanmar, Thailand and Viet Nam.

To date, more than 40 border liaison offices have been established to allow law enforcement agencies to carry out joint operations and exchange information.