Representatives from drug prevention agencies of ASEAN member countries along with China, the Republic of Korea and Japan gathered at the ASEAN+3 Airport Interdiction Task Force Workshop to discuss measures to strengthen cooperation in combating narcotics trafficking in the region.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Anang Iskandar, head of the National Narcotics Agency of Indonesia, said that the two-day event, which kicked off in Indonesia’s Badung city on May 20, aimed to intensify airport interdiction cooperation among the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and the three above countries to prevent and cut off the international trafficking of narcotics and narcotic precursors in the region.

“ASEAN leaders have a strong commitment to realise Drug Free ASEAN 2015, as stipulated in the ASEAN Leaders’ Declaration on Drug Free ASEAN 2015. As we all are aware, 2015 is only two years from now, therefore, we must work hard and put our maximum effort into realising the said target,” said Anang.

Khine Myat Chit, a senior official from the ASEAN Secretariat, said that better cooperation between ASEAN and other countries was needed to deal with the narcotics problem, as although the bloc has formed the ASEAN task force to combat drug trafficking since 1997, there are more and more dangerous drugs appearing.

ASEAN includes Indonesia , Thailand , Laos , Cambodia , Brunei , the Philippines , Malaysia , Myanmar , Singapore and Vietnam.-VNA