RP, China Agree on Action Plan against Illegal Drugs

Article excerpt

The campaign against illegal drugs in the country has received a big boost with the signing of a program of action or "operational guidelines" on the prevention and control of illegal drug trafficking by the Philippines and the People's Republic of China, Interior and Local Government Secretary and Dangerous Drugs Board Chairman Joey Lina Jr. said yesterday.

Lina said he met this week with Public Security Minister and State Councilor Zhou Yongkang of the People's Republic of China on the implementation of a memorandum of understanding signed by the two countries for Cooperation against Illicit Traffic and Abuse of Narcotic Drugs, Psychotic Substances, and Precursor Chemicals.

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Foreign Affairs Secretary Blas F. Ople said the agreement spells out the operational level arrangements of the bilateral agreement signed between the two countries in 2001 during President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's official state visit to China.

Ople added that closer cooperation between Philippine and Chinese law enforcers will aid the ongoing campaign to neutralize and prosecute drugs syndicates in the country.

"The implementation of this agreement is a key practical area of cooperation between the two sides and further widens our common ground with the People's Republic of China," Ople said.

Ople noted China's successful anti-drug campaign within its borders and in transborder cooperation with its neighbors like Vietnam, Thailand, and Myanmar.

He said that the more organized operations with China will help Philippine authorities in cracking down against smuggling and drug trafficking in the Philippines.With these operational guidelines between the two countries, it will now be much easier and faster to identify and arrest those involved in illegal drug trade in the country as well as the investigation of drug-related cases, he said.

It will also be easier to identify sources of chemicals and precursors used in the manufacture of shabu and other illegal drugs.

The agreement promotes and encourages various modes of cooperation to effectively prevent and control the various aspects of illicit production, distribution, trafficking, and abuse of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances and the diversion of precursors and essential chemicals used in the manufacture of narcotic drugs and/or psychotropic substances.

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Director General Anselmo Avenido and PROC Bureau of Narcotics Control (BNC) Director- General Yang Fengrui signed the document called "Terms of Reference" (TOR) containing the program of action for the participation in investigation and controlled delivery of illegal drug trafficking. …