Regional Programme for Afghanistan and Neighbouring Countries

UNODC supports the Tehran International Conference on Cooperation Against Illicit Drugs and Related Organized Crime 

27 February 2017, Tehran, Iran

On 27 February 2017, Ministers, Heads of Drug Control Agencies and senior officials from 33 countries as well as senior representatives from 7 International and regional organizations met in Tehran (I.R of Iran) for the "International Conference on Cooperation against Illicit Drugs and related Organized Crime".

The participants expressed concern that an increased level of production of drugs in Afghanistan, mainly due to insecurity, poses an additional challenge to the state, the region and beyond and requires enhanced cooperation and comprehensive measures to counter the trafficking in drugs and the smuggling of precursors at the regional and international level, based on the relevant international legal instruments.

During his speech, the UNODC Executive Director, Mr. Yuri Fedotov noted that UNODC was responding to the increase of opiates trafficked through the Northern and Balkan routes by working with regional and international partners to build greater cooperation against transnational organized crime and terrorism threats, as well as refining regional drug control coordination. Known as the  "One UNODC Concerted Approach for Europe, West and Central Asia", activities included efforts under the Regional Programme for Afghanistan and Neighbouring Countries, and South Eastern Europe, the Programme for Central Asia, and the Country Programmes for Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan.

Furthermore, a number of integrated initiatives such as the Triangular Initiative, which brings together Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan to share good practices on law enforcement and conduct joint operations against drug trafficking, the Networking of Networks initiative which is aimed at building bridges between the different law enforcement bodies along the major opiate trafficking routes as well as others, play an important role in providing assistance to the regional states in countering the trafficking of opiates.

It was recognized that that Afghanistan and the transit countries in the region continue to face multifaceted challenges, and reaffirm the continuing need for cooperation and support, including the provision of technical assistance to, inter alia, enhance their capacities to effectively address and counter the drug problem.

UNODC thanks the European Union for providing funding for the participation of RP countries at the event.