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NASSAU, Bahamas, Mar 14, CMC – National Security Minister Marvin H. Dames is attending the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) 62nd Ministerial Segment in Austria with a view to providing bi-lateral and multi-lateral agreements to strengthen counter drug measures relative to smuggling, profits from drug, and human rights protection for users and victims, according to an official statement released here.
It said that the Ministerial Segment emanates from the Political Declaration and Plan of Action on International Cooperation towards an integrated and balanced strategy to counter the world drug problems which was adopted in 2009.
“While The Bahamas has made substantial progress in countering and advancing drug control, the country is still challenged. Like the global community, The Bahamas has been plagued by the drug epidemic which flourished in the 80s,” according to the statement.
It said that the country is located along the drug trafficking routes between South America and North America and the migrant smuggling route emanating from one of the more impoverished and less stable Caribbean countries.
The statement said that The Bahamas continues to be challenged by the transport and smuggling of migrants, guns and drug trans-shipments.
It said that during the two-day Ministerial Segment, Dames will highlight and reaffirm the country’s efforts to meet the global 2019 target of jointly addressing and countering the world drug problems.
“Since 2009 The Bahamas has established and/or updated a number of bilateral and regional international cooperation agreements for mutual legal or judicial assistance on the control of drug trafficking and related crimes.”
These include the Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Treaties; Forfeited or Confiscated Assets or their Equivalent Sums Agreement; and Confiscation of the Proceeds of Drug Trafficking Agreement. Other preventive and enforcement measures taken to combat criminal activities that may be linked to trafficking includes laws to address trafficking in persons, smuggling of migrants and the financing of terrorism.
The statement said that Dames will next Wednesday be “part of the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD) which was established by the General Assembly of the Organization of American States (OAS).
It said countries such as Argentina, Canada, Colombia, Mexico, The Bahamas, United States, and Uruguay will present on drug policies and advancements of the same in the hemisphere since their last meeting.
“Dames will underscore that The Bahamas is fully committed to eradicating drug shipment and use within its borders, the region and globally,” the statement added.