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PRESS-RELEASE on the First Inter-regional Workshop on the issues of combating drug crimes (Astana, May 13-14 2014)

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Today in Astana there has been opened the First Inter-regional Workshop on the theme «Establishment and reinforcing the Network of Prosecutors and Central Authorities on mutual legal assistance from source, transit and destination countries located along the northern Afghanistan drug trafficking routes», organized by the Prosecutor  General 's Office of the Republic of Kazakhstan with the support of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

The representatives of the Regional Office of the UNODC in Central Asia, the UNODC Office in Afghanistan, Eurojust, Azerbaijan, Afghanistan, Germany, Georgia, Denmark, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, the Netherlands, the Russian Federation, the USA, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Sweden are taking part in the course of forum.

As noted by the First Deputy Prosecutor General Mr. Iogan Merkel, illegal drug trafficking remains as one of the global problems of humankind. Modern scales of transnational organized drug crimes make serious threat to the international security.

Within the two day lasted workshop it is planned to discuss the urgent issues of international cooperation and strengthening the role of prosecutor offices in the fight against transnational drug-related crimes, rendering mutual legal assistance in the investigation of drug-related crimes with the transnational nature, enhancing legal and practical instruments in the fight against drug trafficking. The problems of production and drug trafficking from Afghanistan and the response measures of the UN Office on drugs and crime, the study of the practice of the Eurojust, as well as practice of the Coordinating Council of prosecutor generals of the CIS member States in the investigation of transnational drug-related crimes are also on agenda.

In the framework of exchange of experience the participants will get acquainted with the national practice of Afghanistan and Iran, Central Asia and South Caucasus countries, and also other countries of transit and destination on application of advanced methods of combating drug trafficking, investigation of transnational crimes. In particular, among others, there will be considered the actual matters on the right to issue sanctions on conducting international controlled deliveries and other operative-research activities.

The problem of combating drug-related crime is also very topical for Kazakhstan, it is first of all due to the use of the country as a transit corridor for Afghan drug.

The problems of investigation on legalization of income from drugs, their identification, arrest and confiscation of property are represented as the important topics of discussion.

In the context of issues on mutual legal assistance in investigation of transnational drug-related crimes, discussions associated with executed or rejected international requests have been taken place. For example, for the last three years foreign countries’ 200 applications on rendering of legal assistance for drug issues, and more than 30 requests on extradition of persons, who have committed drug crimes were satisfied by Kazakhstan. In its turn, the prosecutor's office of Kazakhstan directed 140 orders on drug crimes to the competent authorities of other countries.

As noted by the experts of international organizations and competent authorities of different countries, the present situation requires deep analysis on drugs situation, establishment of real barriers in order to make the existing transit route of drugs extremely problematic and disadvantageous for drug traffickers.

In this regard, there has been noted the importance of efforts unification of all interested parties in developing a common strategy of actions aimed at decreasing the drug threat, blocking of drug trafficking channels. In the framework of providing effective coordination of anti-drug operations, conducting the joint organizational-practical measures, using of effective international-legal mechanisms for combating drug trafficking.

Press service of Prosecutor General's Office

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