UNDP supports Vietnam’s drug trafficking fight

(VOV) - Vietnam is becoming a hotspot for trafficking large amounts of drugs and drug substances to overseas markets.

Zhuldyz Akisheva, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) country manager in Vietnam, said that illegal drug trading within Vietnam and abroad is increasing through international airports and seaports

Since 2010, amphetamine (ATS) has become the second most used drug in Vietnam. New substances are sold publicly in the country, even via the internet, making it difficult for law enforcement agencies to control.

The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has supported the Vietnamese Government in developing a new strategy and relevant policies to deal with drug users and traffickers.

These documents prioritise implementing the national programme of actions against drug and drug-related crimes, boosting cross-border cooperation, dealing with emerging, new crimes and strengthening the efficiency of community-based detoxification.

The UNDP has also assisted mountainous provinces, such as Son Lan, Dien Bien, Yen Bai, and Lao Cai, in drug abuse and HIV prevention, treatment and rehabilitation for ethnic minority people.

Akisheva said to effectively fight against illicit drug activity in Vietnam, UNODC and the World Health Organisation (WHO) are implementing a pilot project on voluntary detoxification.

UNODC also supports national efforts to control the spread of HIV and infectious diseases in prisons and communities, through raising public awareness of HIV and encouraging drug user involvement in policymaking.

Furthermore, it assists in international cooperation by sharing information with neighboring countries through border liaison offices, about transnational crimes in trafficking drugs, wild animals, timber, ozone depleting chemicals and harmful wastes.

Fourteen border liaison offices have been set up on Vietnam’s borders with Laos, Cambodia and China.