Italian, Afghan Officials Attend Anti-Drug Course

Italian, Afghan Officials Attend Anti-Drug CourseItalian, Afghan Officials Attend Anti-Drug Course

Officials from the anti-narcotics departments of the police forces of Italy and Afghanistan participated in an educational course on fighting drug trafficking at Tehran’s Amin Police University, and also visited the laboratories of Iran’s Law Enforcement Forces (LEF) last week.

The week-long course was organized under a memorandum of understanding signed between the foreign ministries of the three nations on mutual cooperation against illicit drug trade, the LEF website reported.

Amin University is a police academy affiliated to the LEF and its international faculty provides training for police forces from 16 countries. Its current head is General Mohammad Taqi Assar.

Instructors from the science and research department at the Iran Drug Control Headquarters (IDCH) and Italian experts provided information in several key areas including smuggling methods of illicit drugs, the role of international cooperation in fighting the scourge, and the effectiveness of electronic equipment in finding drug hauls, and how to use the gadgets.

“The IDCH labs are on par with global standards,” said Italy’s anti-narcotics liaison officer Favio Bernardi, who was heading the Italian delegation.

The delegations also toured the IDCH exhibition in Tehran. Curator Mohammad Salehi briefed them on the history and types of industrial and traditional drugs available in and outside Iran, new psychedelic drugs, data on local and global drug seizures and operations, planting strategies, sniffer dogs and body scanners.

Head of the Afghan delegation Mohammad Zakir Rasouli, said the course was an eye-opener and an edifying experience for his team, while appreciating Iran’s efforts in monitoring illicit drug smuggling in the long border areas.

Despite high economic and human costs, the Islamic Republic has been actively fighting drug trafficking over the past three decades. Every year, Tehran launches large-scale operations against the drug gangs and the transit through Iran of large quantities of narcotics from neighboring Afghanistan bound for Europe and the US, which accounts for 40% of global seizures.

Iran has repeatedly called for a more effective global strategy to check drug trafficking via the Balkan route, including active cooperation among countries in preventing money laundering, identifying the drug cartels, unearthing assets of the drug mafia and sharing information on crime and criminal activities.