Inter-agency units in South-Eastern Europe trained on new narcotics’ detection equipment

January-June 2023, South-Eastern Europe: With continuous efforts aimed at strengthening capacities of the customs and police administrations in South-Eastern Europe, the UNODC Passenger and Cargo Border Team (PCBT) procured the Thermo Scientific TruNarc Raman Handheld Narcotics Analyzer for the inter-agency units supported through the EU-UNODC joint action on enhanced border control currently implemented in the region.

Over April-June 2023, PCBT organized five separate training events (online & in-person) on the use of the donated equipment for 62 customs and police officers appointed to the inter-agency units at the land, sea and airports and other officers working in the field of identification of the illegal narcotics in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia and Kosovo[1].

The trainings were organized in collaboration with the UNODC Forensic Services, UNODC HQ Vienna, as well as the respective forensics laboratories of the participating administrations and aimed to provide knowledge on the proper use of the handheld devices for the preliminary identification of illicit drugs and precursors applying the various available methods and safety measures. The participants also discussed recent trends and persistent threats posed by the drug trafficking across the region. The effective and safe use of the handheld devices is intended to enhance strategies and activities aimed at effectively combating the flow of illicit narcotics.

The donation and the training events were delivered within the EU-UNODC joint action on enhanced border control, currently implemented in South-Eastern Europe UNODC Passenger and Cargo Border Team (PCBT) in cooperation with the UNODC Regional Programme for South Eastern Europe and funded by the European Union.

[1] All references to Kosovo shall be understood in the context of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999)