India expresses concern over drug trafficking, terrorist networks

New York, April 20 (IANS) India on Tuesday voiced its concern over “the growing nexus of drug trafficking and terrorist networks”, saying that “we have to continue and toughen our collective fight against these evils”.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley made the remarks while addressing the ongoing Special Session of the UN General Assembly on the World Drug Problem, which opened here on Tuesday morning.

“The growing nexus of drug trafficking and terrorist networks endangers peace, security and stability across regions,” he said. “We have to continue and toughen our collective fight against these evils.”

“The problems of illicit cultivation of poppy, cannabis and coca crops, multifaceted challenges faced by transit countries and those affected by drug related terrorism should receive particular attention,” said the minister, according to Xinhua news agency.

“Alternative development is also a very important aspect of drug control,” he said. “Recreational use of drugs would only aggravate the problem.”

On the fight against illegal drug use, he said, “new challenges have emerged which call for a concerted and balanced response from the international community”.

“Terrorism constitutes one of the most dangerous threats to civilised societies today,” he said. “Terrorism knows no borders and terrorists continue to strike cities and innocent civilians across continents.”

“Money laundering and illicit financial flows and proceeds of crime generated from drug trafficking and other transnational organized crime remain a major challenge,” he said.

“National efforts, however intense and sincere, cannot adequately deal with the drug problems,” he said. “Bilateral, regional and international cooperation is essential in this area.”

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