Wednesday, February 25, 2015

MoI Pledges Commitment to Boosting Regional and International Cooperation in the Fight against Drugs

At the conclusion of the Conference

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates - Saturday, February 21st 2015 [ME NewsWire]

The Regional Conference on New Synthetic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances recently concluded its events at the Abu Dhabi Hilton Hotel. The two-day conference was organized by the Ministry of Interior (MoI) in collaboration with United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) at the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states.

The MoI reiterated its commitment to enhancing regional and international cooperation in the fight against the scourge of drugs, and the need to take part in Arab and international anti-drug conferences, forums and meetings, in order to exchange information and expertise. It also stressed its keenness to strengthening all areas of cooperation among Arab anti-drugs bodies, and activating existing conventions with the aim of countering the spread of new drugs and psychotropic substances in the region.

The closing ceremony was attended by Colonel Saeed Abdullah Al Suwaidi, Director General, Anti-Narcotics Federal Directorate General at the Ministry of Interior; Judge Dr. Hatem Aly, UNODC's representative and head of the sub-regional office for the GCC; anti-narcotics general directors, representatives of 10 GCC and Arab countries, and a number of MoI’s officers.

In his speech at the closing event, Colonel Al Suwaidi stressed the MoI’s commitment to accelerate the pace of cooperation with civil society organizations and other anti-drugs entities in the fight against the drug scourge, which targets the youth; the pillar of the UAE and its future. This vision is based on the MoI’s belief in the vital role of the community to reduce demand on new drugs and psychotropic substances.

He also expressed his gratitude for UNODC’s efforts and cooperation with the MoI in the fight against drugs. He also thanked participants in the conference for sharing their expertise and experiences, which contributed to the success of the conference and achieving its objectives, in a way that befits the reputation of the UAE and the status of the Ministry of Interior.

For his part, Judge Dr. Hatem Aly, UNODC's representative and head of the sub-regional office for the GCC, extended his sincere gratitude to the MoI’s officials for the opportunity to organize the conference. He noted that organizing this conference underlines the UAE’s commitment to collaborating with UNODC and supporting prevention efforts, as well as empowering human competencies to utilize them in spreading awareness among community members.

He added: “The MoI has adopted diverse strategies in the fight against drugs. These include, among others, intensifying social awareness programs; enhancing community members’ awareness about the harmful effects  and risks of new drugs and psychotropic substances; establishing strategic partnerships with civil society organizations to curb this scourge; as well as  utilizing best and advanced technologies in the fight against drugs, and boosting staff members’ competencies by adopting quality training programs, based on modern methods, tools, and concepts used in the fight against drugs.

On the second day, the conference reviewed a paper presented by Colonel Saeed Abdullah Al Suwaidi, Director General, Anti-Narcotics Federal Directorate General at the Ministry of Interior. In his paper, Colonel Al Suwaidi tackled the UAE experience in the fight against new synthetic drugs and psychotropic substances; stressing the importance of accelerating the pace of local cooperation among anti-drugs bodies, and strengthening regional and international cooperation to enhance drug fighting efforts.

Colonel Al Suwaidi also gave several examples on field operations that resulted in detecting and seizing large amounts of drugs, thanks to regional cooperation between anti-drugs authorities; notably the “Wooden Doors” operation that was conducted in collaboration between anti-narcotics authorities in the UAE, Kuwait, and Lebanon.

Colonel Dr. Khalid Al Sumaiti, from the General Department of Forensic Science and Criminology at Dubai Police, presented another paper pertaining to the various challenges faced by crime labs in detecting and analyzing new drugs and psychotropic substances.

Mohammed Musabeh Ali Dhahi from Dubai Customs submitted a paper on the various techniques and efforts adopted by Dubai Customs in countering drugs. He indicated that the Dubai Customs has adopted an operational reference model for processing transactions according to a risk assessment engine to achieve its mission pertaining to trade facilitation and compliance conformance. The Dubai Customs has also conducted a number of projects and initiatives to qualify staff members, and take part in drug fighting operations on the regional level, by sharing information with other Gulf States.

Lieutenant Assistant Expert Ibrahim Ali Al Hosani, from the Forensic Evidence Department at Abu Dhabi Police, presented a paper about the comprehensive drug screening device (DrugAlyser).

Expert Conner Crane, from the Laboratory and Scientific Branch at the Trends Research and Analysis Section at the UNODC, presented a paper pertaining to the scientific programs and forensic evidence services provided by UNODC on new synthetic drugs and psychotropic substances.

Expert Mary Ho, from the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB), tackled in her paper the need to establish an executive tool for cooperation in the fight against new drugs and psychotropic substances.

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The Arabic-language text of this announcement is the official, authoritative version. Translations are provided as an accommodation only, and should be cross-referenced with the Arabic-language text, which is the only version of the text intended to have legal effect.


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