Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Pakistan, Romania agree to cooperate in anti-narcotics field

ISLAMABAD, Jul 2 (APP): Pakistan and Romania have agreed to expand and promote existing collaboration in anti-narcotics field through increased intelligence sharing, demand reduction and training for rehabilitation of drug addicts.

Major General Syed Khalid Amir Jaffery, Director General, Anti Narcotics Force led a 3-member delegation to Romania and held meetings with the President/Chief Inspector of the Romanian National Anti-Drug Agency, General Inspector of Border Police, Chief Commissioner of Border Police and Deputy State Secretary of the Romanian Ministry of Interior and Administrative Reforms. According to a message received here from Pakistan Embassy Bucharest, the Romanian side assured the visiting Pakistani delegation that their government would support intensification of cooperation in this sensitive field.

The range of discussions covered joint operations, intelligence sharing and specified training for anti-drug officials and police officers dealing with human trafficking and money laundering. This was the first ever experts level contact between the two countries. During the discussion, the Pakistan’s delegation was happy to learn that the Romanians in the past two decades had not found any Pakistani national involved in drug smuggling despite the fact that the illegal drug seized in Romania had originated mostly from Afghanistan through the Balkan route.

Ambassador Sanaullah emphasized that the members of Pakistani community in Romania were peaceful and law-abiding and in the past 10 years, not a single incident was reported where a Pakistani was found involved. Therefore, it was incumbent on the Ministry of Interior as well as the Border Police Force to change their generally harsh attitude towards visitors from Pakistan. Human trafficking was, no doubt, an abhorrent trend, but the Romanian government should realize that tightening of visa for Pakistanis and other Asians would soon start impacting seriously on bilateral trade.

Legitimate businessmen should be facilitated to explore business in Romania, he added. Major General Syed Khalid Amir Jaffery briefed the Romanian officials on Pakistan’s efforts to curb smuggling of narcotics via Pakistan to Europe. He emphasized the need to expand collaboration and intelligence sharing. He was assured that Romania would consider hosting a liaison officer in its Embassy in Islamabad for intelligence sharing and also would send a delegation of experts to Pakistan to maintain the momentum generated by the visit.

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