Pakistan takes ‘robust’ steps to fight illicit drugs: Nisar
NEW YORK, 20 APR (DNA) – Pakistan has put in place “robust and comprehensive” measures to counter the scourge of narcotic drugs, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan told the United Nations, while calling for better coordination and cooperation among member states to accomplish the task.
Speaking in the Special Session of the UN General Assembly on the world drug problem, the Interior Minister said: “Drug demand reduction, treatment and rehabilitation are high on our priority.”
Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan is leading a seven member delegation to the UN to represent Pakistan at the 3-day UN General Assembly Special Session on the World Drug Problem. The Session is being attended by several Heads of State and Government as well as over 50 Ministers.
At the same time, Nisar Ali Khan voiced concern over emerging trends in some parts of the world to legalize use of illicit drugs — obviously referring to moves being made in a few countries to permit the use of marijuana.
“This would give a fillip to drug demand thus igniting the supply chain having direct fallouts on our region,” the minister told high-level delegates. He added that the concepts lacking consensus, like harm reduction and the so-called human rights based approach, were likely to further complicate the issue.
“We have all been endeavouring to build a drug free society not a drug tolerant society.” Several heads of state and more than 40 ministers from around the world are attending the session at UN Headquarters in New York.
Nisar Ali Khan said Pakistan’s geographical location exposes it to be the prime victim and transit country for major portion of global opiates and cannabis, while pointing out that drug dynamics in producing countries, transit countries and target countries were diverse. “No two countries and no two regions have similar environment. Therefore, there are no one-size-fits-all solutions.”
“We take pride in saving the world from over 1.86 Billion narcotics doses in the last three years”, the Minister told the world body. Last year, he said, “We seized over 342 tons of illicit drugs”, and added that being the top contributors in international seizures beyond its territorial borders, Pakistan contributed to almost 25 tons of illicit drugs seizures around the world. “Drug Demand Reduction, treatment and rehabilitation are high on our priority”, he said.
The Minister told the world body that because of Pakistan’s geographical location the country is confronted with multifaceted challenges exposing it to being the prime victim and transit country for a major portion of global opiates and cannabis.
Arguing that no two countries and no two regions have a similar environment, the Minister said, “We believe that Drug Dynamics in producing countries, transit countries and target countries are diverse. Therefore there are no ‘one size fit all’ solutions”.
Chaudhry Nisar expressed concern over the emerging trends in some parts of the world to legalize the use of illicit drugs saying that this would give a fillip to drug demand thus igniting the supply chain, which will have a direct fallout on our region.
Furthermore, he said, the concepts lacking consensus, like harm reduction and the so- called human rights based approach are likely to further complicate the issue. He affirmed that, “We have all been endeavouring to build a drug free society not a drug tolerant society”.
The Minister said that Pakistan expects greater focus on the prime target and transit countries in terms of mustering resources for the capacity building of the frontline states in the war against narcotic drugs, commensurate to the threat they are confronted with and proportionate to their core contributions to the cause.
He urged that the existing UN Drug Control Conventions should be treated as a repository of core guiding principles for developing an international counter drug approach.
He concluded by saying that what the world community decides to adopt in the coming days will help to determine the future of global efforts to save our succeeding generations from the scourge of narcotic drugs. DNA
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