At the meeting (Photo VNA)

Hanoi (VNA)
– Vietnam and Laos agreed to strengthen coordination to crack down on drug crime in their border areas at the 12th meeting of drug prevention and combat units in Hanoi on December 26.

The involved parties include the department of drug crime investigation under Vietnam’s Ministry of Public Security; the drug and crime prevention department of the Border Guard High Command under Vietnam’s Ministry of Defence; and the drug prevention department of the general department of police under the Lao Ministry of Public Security.

Vietnam and Laos share a borderline of nearly 2,340 km that runs across through 10 Vietnamese provinces: Dien Bien, Son La, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri, Thua Thien-Hue, Quang Nam, and Kon Tum. 

The line also appears in 10 Lao provinces: Phongsaly, Luang Prabang, Houaphan, Bolykhamsay, Khammoune, Savannakhet, Salavan, Xiengkhouang, Sepon, and Attapeu.

This line is among the hot spots of drug trafficking, according to Major General Pham Van Cac, head of the department of drug crime investigation.

In recent times, the department has discovered complicated situations in Lao areas bordering Vietnamese provinces of Dien Bien, Son La and Thanh Hoa, along with areas in Vietnamese border provinces of Nghe An and Kon Tum, he said.

Traffickers are mainly ethnic minority people. 

To prevent the crime, the three units have deployed a number of programmes such as joining forums and joint activities of countries in the world, particularly in the Southeast Asian region and the West-East economic corridor.

Vietnamese and Lao anti-drug forces have conducted 255 bilateral border patrols and cracked down on 4,254 cases, capturing 5,768 people involved and seizing over 496.91kg of heroin, 584kg of synthetic drug, and more than 560,300 meth pills.

Delegates from the three units discussed specific measures to promote their achievements over the past time as well as further deepen the trilateral cooperation in the field, Cac said.

Senior Lieutenant Colonel Inpong Chanthavongsa, deputy head of the Lao drug crime prevention department, said Lao anti-drug forces will continue coordinating with Vietnamese counterparts to implement anti-drug measures, contributing to building a Vietnam-Laos borderline of peace and friendship./.