India, US sign narcotics control agreement

Both sides discussed closer cooperation in combating drug trafficking and related crimes


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 Image used for illustrative purposes only.
Image used for illustrative purposes only.

Published: Sat 23 Jul 2022, 10:04 AM

Last updated: Sat 23 Jul 2022, 10:21 AM

India and the United States have signed an Amended Letter of Agreement (ALOA) in the field of narcotics control and law enforcement cooperation, the US State Department said on Friday.

The agreement was signed during the third meeting of the India-US Counternarcotics Working Group (CNWG) held in New Delhi on July 7-8.

"Mr Satya Narayan Pradhan, Director General, NCB led the Indian delegation and Mr Kemp Chester, Senior Advisor to the Director of National Drug Control Policy at the White House, led the US delegation," said the joint statement released by the US State Department on Friday.

According to them, the US delegation was co-led by senior officials from the State Department and the Department of Justice, such as "representatives from relevant agencies responsible for law enforcement, policy formulation, drug demand reduction, and other drug-related matters".

These groups "participated in the deliberations on wide-ranging issues related to drug demand, narcotics trafficking, regulatory and control efforts, and cooperation on enforcement and criminal investigations".

During the working group meeting, "each side presented an overview of the prevailing drug trafficking scenario in their respective countries, and shared updates on current efforts to thwart trafficking and save lives", the statement added.

The meeting also saw discussions on law enforcement coordination, regulatory matters and opportunities for bilateral cooperation in multilateral forums.

Both countries also agreed to include drug demand reduction topics under the umbrella of the CNWG, and to cooperate in fighting the exploitation of unregulated chemicals and pharmaceuticals diverted by drug trafficking networks.

Finally, the two sides discussed closer cooperation on information-sharing and capacity-building in combating drug trafficking and related crimes.

"Acknowledging the importance of bilateral capacity-building in fighting cross-border drug trafficking, the United States will organise training programs for Indian drug enforcement agencies on trafficking in fentanyl and related synthetic opioids," the US State Department said.

The United States will host the next CNWG conference in 2023.


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