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UNIS/NAR/690
4 July 2000
Azerbaijani President to Sign Drug Control Agreement in Vienna Tomorrow (5 July)

VIENNA, 4 July (UN Information Service) ? In a move to close a major drug trafficking route from Western Asia to Europe President Heydar Aliyev of Azerbaijan will formalize his nations cooperation with the UN and two other countries at a ceremony tomorrow at the Vienna International Centre.

Under the agreement, Azerbaijan will join with Georgia, Iran and the Vienna-based United Nations International Drug Control Programme (UNDCP) to fight drug trafficking and money laundering in the region. With the end of the tight border controls maintained by the former Soviet Union, opium and heroin smugglers have carved out a new trafficking route from Afghanistan into Russia and Europe via Iran, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia. Armenia, Georgia and Iran signed an identical agreement with UNDCP last June.

After the agreement is signed by the President and ODCCP Executive Director Pino Arlacchi, it will be forwarded to the Foreign Ministers of Georgia and Iran for their signatures.

The President and his party will arrive at the Plaza of the Vienna International Centre at 9:45 a.m., where he will be greeted by Mr. Arlacchi, who is also Director-General of the UN Office at Vienna. President Aliyev will be escorted to the balcony of the Rotunda to view a model of the VIC and be briefed on the work of the Vienna-based UN organizations.

At 10 a.m. he will meet with Mr. Arlacchi in Conference Room VII followed immediately by the signing ceremony. Press will be admitted to the Conference Room before the ceremony, in which President Aliyev will also sign the Golden Book of the UN.

Also during his visit, President Aliyev will meet with Carlos Magarinos, Director-General of the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Mohamed El Baradei, Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Wolfgan Hoffmann, Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO).

President Aliyev is scheduled to depart the VIC at 1 p.m.

Media representatives not already accredited to the United Nations
should contact Veronika Mayerhofer to facilitate admission to the premises.

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